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Sign Ordinance Passed in Dothan

A sign ordinance passed today by the Dothan City Commission requires a permit for every temporary sign in the city and limits digital billboards.
Digital billboards to temporary signs like banners, flags and balloons will now be regulated. The City Commission passed the ordinance today without any opposition. Officials say it's been in the works for years and after numerous town hall meetings, they feel that the public has been given a chance to speak up against it. But that's not stopping some from disagreeing with it now that it has passed.

"As a previous business owner I understand that advertisement is very expensive already and to have that sign it's a little added bonus to have people know you're there and can come in at any time," said Faith Reinelt, Houston County resident.

Many businesses would agree--the Circle City is full of restaurants, stores and services and not having eye catching signs could be the difference between high and low sales. Under the new ordinance, scrolling text and animation is not allowed; and those flag banners you see around town will be limited to one per property. Other temporary signs that are allowed under the ordinance will require the free permit and will only be allowed for periods of time throughout the year. The addition of new digital billboards will be limited.

But many residents like the idea of having less signs--saying the restrictions will improve city aesthetics.

"Coming from a state where there's no signs on the road they're not allowed. It does make a difference. Changes the way the city looks. You see the landscape. You see the city more than you see the signs," said Kristin Atwell, Houston County resident.

Officials plan to take to the streets soon--letting businesses know if their signs need to be taken down. For the signs that don't have to be done away with, businesses will be required to get a permit for them by January.
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