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|Abingdon Billboard to Stay
|POSTED 8:43 a-m 3/2/10 Abingdon city officials who opposed a billboard going up in town and even passed an ordinance to try to prevent it from happening have seen those efforts come up short.
City Attorney Jack Ball told the city council during Monday night's meeting that the billboard at Bradshaw's TV & Appliance along Illinois Route 41 can't be banned. The city council last November unanimously approved an ordinance to essentially prevent businesses and property owners from selling space for billboards that advertise for someone else.
Mayor Roger Stegall and members of the city council also opposed the billboard because of its size. Ball, however, says there's nothing the city can do about it.
"The federal government doesn't agree with (the city's) position regarding prohibiting off-premises signage," Ball said. "Under, and it's somewhat complicated, but several years ago the federal government passed a Beautification of America Act."
Ball says states were required to pass a similar act or they risked losing road funds, and as a part of that, a non-Home Rule municipality - like Abingdon - cannot prohibit off-premises signage.
Ball says there is a 3rd District Court of Appeals case which controls this area out of Macomb. The city of Macomb had attempted to prohibit off-premises signage and billboards, but Ball says the 3rd District struck that effort down.
The Abingdon City Council previously passed an ordinance that would have banned this billboard at Bradshaw's TV & Appliance along Illinois Route 41 in Abingdon. Officials have since learned the city cannot prohibit it based on case law associated with the federal Beautification of America Act.
(WGIL News Story and Photo by Mike Perry)
|03 02 10 by Newsroom
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