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Letters to the Editor

Sign fairness

November 26, 2010

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To the editor:

I am a licensed child care provider in Lawrence for the last 29 years. I called the city development services department to inquire what the regulations are for putting a sign in my yard to advertise openings in my home day care. I received the following response: “You may place a two-by-two-foot sign attached to your house or a one-by-one-foot sign in your yard.” I then asked why real estate agents, roofers and painters are allowed to post large signs. The response was, “I don’t know. That’s just the city’s code.”

The way I see it is I am a small business owner in Lawrence and pay businesses taxes the same as everyone else who is allowed to advertise their business in Lawrence, but I was told if I don’t comply with the appropriate size sign, my sign will be removed. The city allows people to advertise garage sales with signs so people can make money and do not pay city taxes on that, but I, as a taxpayer, can’t advertise my business with a sign large enough for people to see. Does this sound fair to you?

Lorrie Wiseman,

Lawrence

Comments

somebodynew 4 years, 1 month ago

But #1, just because it has been that way doesn't make it right. Now, in addition to writing a letter to the LJW, I hope the letter writer talks to some other licensed day care operators and they follow up with trying to get this changed. Otherwise, this was an exercise in futility. (Trying to get it changed may be too, but at least you tried.)

GardenMomma 4 years, 1 month ago

Probably not since they provide a service, not a good. But they pay other business taxes, especially if they have employees. Not to mention, certifications and insurance. Maybe they pay property taxes at a businesses rate rather than a homeowners rate?

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 1 month ago

" I called the city development services department to inquire what the regulations are for putting a sign in my yard to advertise openings in my home day care."

There was your mistake. As every developer in this town knows, it's often better to ask for forgiveness than permission. (and they almost always get it.)

mr_right_wing 4 years, 1 month ago

Word-of-mouth is better advertising than even the largest sign.

beatrice 4 years ago

If only politicians heeded this advice.

somedude20 4 years, 1 month ago

Yes it does sound fair! Maybe it is because real estate signs, garage sale signs, and painter signs are all temporary and the sign Lorrie wants would be permanent. She may choose to poop in her own back yard but others pay their taxes to live (sorry, LIVE) there and may not want to see some tacky sign day in and day out. This being a free market, may I suggest that you move your business to a place that allows signs (non residential zone)

beatrice 4 years ago

She has openings right now, as she states in the letter. Once the openings are filled, I don't see why she would leave the sign up. I believe it would be temporary.

She should also run for office. That way, she could put signs all over town, and make day care her cause.

beatrice 4 years ago

Someone already made the point that it will be temporary, just further down. I responded directly before reading the rest. Oops.

Jimo 4 years, 1 month ago

"I then asked why real estate agents, roofers and painters are allowed to post large signs."

Hmmm....temporary signage about business work performed related to the real estate versus an ongoing sign advertising business services being run in a (no doubt) residential neighborhood zoned for single-family homes.

Hmmm....I wonder what the difference might be?

Lady, you're biggest concern isn't the City but your neighbors. I suspect they don't appreciate all manner of people coming and going in cars from your house. Indeed, I'm fairly certain that they didn't anticipate they were investing in a home right next to a business, whether day care, a hamburger joint, or cement mixing.

beaujackson 4 years ago

Permanent signs should NOT be permitted in residential zoning.

period.

kansanbygrace 4 years ago

a sign advertising openings in a day care is obviously not permanent. It will probably not be needed when the vacancies are filled.

Matthew Herbert 4 years ago

I second the 'better to ask forgiveness than permission" statement. i'm guessing that if you put up a sign of virtually any size no one would bother you, unless a neighbor complained. Your first move ought to be to ask your neighbors what THEY will tolerate. If they don't complain, nobody is going to take your sign down.

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