Hollister council members voted 4-0 on Monday to temporarily suspend the downtown sign ordinance that became the source of controversy when a business complained about enforcement of its neon sign.
Council members approved suspension of the ordinance for the downtown zoning district. The ordinance bans neon signs and has an array of other restrictions, such as those prohibiting banner signs and other types of signage.
The issue cropped up in August when owners of Ohana Shave Ice complained on social media about enforcement of their new neon sign, and many local residents showed angst about the rule.
On Monday, the council suspended that ordinance so officials can examine if they want to make any changes to the law. The code enforcement division will not enforce the downtown sign rules in the meantime, while sign restrictions will stay in place for other areas of town, City Manager Bill Avera clarified.
Avera said the main points of contention with the sign ordinance are neon signs, A-frame signs, window coverings and banners.
“Those are the four major categories that we’ll be looking at,” he said.
BA: this actually is only for the downtown zoning district. Not commercial areas out of downtown. Still enforcement those areas … reminded … oct. 4 in this building 7 a.m. another open house, encouraging downtown biz owners to participate and give us ideas on new or possible amendments to our sign ordinance.
Prohibited Signs in the City Municipal Code
17.20.060 Prohibited signs.
A. The following signs are prohibited:
- Canvas signs, excluding awning signs, banners, pennants, flags, streamers, balloons, or other temporary or wind signs except as otherwise provided in sections entitled Exempt Signs, On-Site Sign Regulations, and Off-Site Sign Regulations of this chapter.
- Mobile, A-frame and portable signs except as permitted on private property (see Section 17.20.050, Exempt Signs).
- Roof or canopy signs extending above a building roof, except that with approval of a Master Sign Plan, a wall sign may be architecturally integrated into a sloping roof fascia or mansard roof.
- Signs that resemble any official marker erected by the city, state, or any governmental agency, or that by reason of position, shape, color, or illumination would conflict with the proper functioning of any traffic sign or signal or would be a hazard to pedestrian or vehicular traffic.
- Signs which produce odor, sound, smoke, fire, or other such emissions.
Quality Code Data 4/20/2018, Page 962
- Animated signs, flashing signs, moving signs, or rotating signs except as otherwise allowed in this chapter.
- Window signs that exceed twenty-five percent (25%) of the visible window glass panel area of a window in the Airport, Airport Support, General Commercial, Commercial Office, Downtown Commercial Mixed Use, Gateway Commercial, or Industrial District and commercial buildings or commercial portion of a building in the West Gateway and Mixed Use Zoning Districts. Window signs are prohibited in the Residential and Home Office Zoning Districts.
- Off-site advertising signs except as provided for in the section entitled Master Sign Program.
- Signs advertising commercial uses, child care homes, day care homes, residential care facilities, and similar uses on sites where the principal use is a residential dwelling unit unless otherwise al- lowed in this title or in accordance with State law.
- Signs affixed to trees, shrubs, utility poles, traffic control devices, and the like.
- Signs on any floor above the first floor unless approved by the Planning Commission or pursuant to adopted sign standards.
- Abandoned signs.
- Multi-faced signs of more than two surface areas of signage.
- Neon signs in the Residential, Home Office and Downtown Commercial Mixed Use Zoning Districts.