Comments by Paul_Lessard

Paul Lessard's picture

Where did this come from? How

Where did this come from? How could you possibly have interpreted huge billboards and 50 foot signs from what I wrote? It's useless to try to have a discussion based on facts when reason is not applied. My point has been made by your comment.

Paul Lessard's picture

On-premises signs aren't billboards

When will you anti-sign people stop demonizing businesses about their 1st Amendment right to place a sign on their own property?

Your entire story misses the point completely. LD 483 has nothing to do with off-premises advertising. So why are you stirring things up about that issue - just to sell newspapers? The scare tactics you employ are raising the usual red flags that has the usual suspect saying that this bill will inevitably lead the end of the world. People who know nothing about the subject first hand decide signs are terrible and shout their ignorance about the topic to the rafters. The uninformed mob is now foaming at the mouth because of your reporting which then rules the day because our elected officials, who themselves are always concerned about being re-elected, turn into politicians that vote the way the crowd wants instead of being statesmen and analyzing the merits of the bill.

Federal laws do not regulate on-premises signs because the feds understand the rights of the property owner to display messaging that identifies the goods and services that are available on those premises. The sign regulations are left where it belongs to the local jurisdiction - the municipality. Your constant comparison to billboards is completely false and misleading. Nowhere does the bill deal with billboards. No changes are made to that section of the law. No signs will be made larger. No signs will be allowed to be placed off-premises. So what is the point of interviewing the anti-sign folks who can only talk about how relaxing any sign law will lead to more billboards. That is a crazy lie.

It's time to return balance and common sense to the marketplace by correcting areas of the law that have unnecessarily caused problems to small businesses. Never has a real debate about the facts of issue such as business potential, legibility and safety ever been raised. It's only the crazy emotional arguments put forth by the people who hate signs that is reported. These people have made no investment in the business and they get to be the ones to decide the issue because they hate signs and that sells papers. When will you get it into your heads that this bill has nothing to do with billboards?

It's about fairness to the businesses whose owners probably have everything they own placed at risk against the success or failure of their business. Small businesses are the victims here because they don't dare step up to speak their minds because they are afraid of negative reporting that will appear in the paper. They don't want their personal opinion to damage their income potential as a result of that. Public opinion is influenced unfairly by the people you choose to emphasize with your interviews and the editorial tone of your reporting. Then the politicians, who always keep their public image in mind, run away from what they falsely perceive to be a controversial topic. Small businesses are thus not given fair representation by these politicians because of your reporting.