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How far from intersections must campaign signs be?

Cecil Hester
2008 StarNews file photo.

2008 StarNews file photo.

Q. How far away from the corners of intersections do campaign signs have to be? Driving down Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway to Market Street you cannot look east on Market, you can hardly see the cars coming towards town. I am sure there are many other intersections that are just as bad.

A. Doyle M. Ward, an assistant division traffic engineer for the N.C. Department of Transportation, referred us to this state statute governing placement of political signs near roadways:

136-32. Regulation of signs.

(b) Compliant Political Signs Permitted. – During the period beginning on the 30th day before the beginning date of “one-stop” early voting under G.S. 163-227.2 and ending on the 10th day after the primary or election day, persons may place political signs in the right-of-way of the State highway system as provided in this section. Signs must be placed in compliance with subsection (d) of this section and must be removed by the end of the period prescribed in this subsection.

(d) Sign Placement. – The permittee must obtain the permission of any property owner of a residence, business, or religious institution fronting the right-of-way where a sign would be erected. Signs must be placed in accordance with the following:

(1) No sign shall be permitted in the right-of-way of a fully controlled access highway.

(2) No sign shall be closer than three feet from the edge of the pavement of the road.

(3) No sign shall obscure motorist visibility at an intersection.

(4) No sign shall be higher than 42 inches above the edge of the pavement of the road.

(5) No sign shall be larger than 864 square inches.

(6) No sign shall obscure or replace another sign.

(e) Penalties for Unlawful Removal of Signs. – It is a Class 3 misdemeanor for a person to steal, deface, vandalize, or unlawfully remove a political sign that is lawfully placed under this section.


At one time it was illegal to place political signs in median strips in Wilmington. Is that still true?

Why are people running for political office allowed to put signs up beside roads when any business doing so would have the sign removed?




User-contributed question by:
Frank Baltezegar

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