Hear­ing set Jan. 24 on sign mes­sage fre­quency

Record Observer - - News - By MIKE DAVIS mdavis@kibay­times.com

CEN­TRE­VILLE — A pub­lic hear­ing was sched­uled dur­ing the Dec. 13 county com­mis­sion meet­ing for an or­di­nance that would al­low mes­sages in elec­tronic signs to change more fre­quently, as well as to make general up­dates to the Code of Pub­lic Lo­cal Laws in Queen Anne’s County.

The hear­ing will be held on Tues­day, Jan. 24, in the Lib­erty build­ing in Cen­tre­ville dur­ing the county com­mis­sion’s evening meet­ing.

In­tro­duced by Com­mis­sioner Robert Buckey, Or­di­nance 16-12 would alter the al­lowed fre­quency of mes­sages in free­stand­ing signs to al­low copy to change ev­ery 30 sec­onds op­posed to one time per day as it was pre­vi­ously writ­ten. The or­di­nance was orig­nally writ­ten to al­low copy to change ev­ery 30 min­utes, but the Queen Anne’s County Plan­ning Com­mis­sion rec­om­mended it change ev­ery 30 sec­onds.

Af­ter the or­di­nance was in­tro­duced to the plan­ning com­mis­sion, prin­ci­ple plan­ner He­len Spinelli said a meet­ing was held with lo­cal busi­nesses to dis­cuss the abil­ity and fre­quency to change the sign’s mes­sage to ac­com­mo­date mul­ti­ple busi­nesses in one site lo­ca­tion.

“This bill was put to­gether based on eco­nom­ics for the county. This is go­ing to cre­ate more busi­ness,” Buckey said. “This is go­ing to help these busi­nesses out that have sales. And it’s a no brainer to me.”

Though elec­tronic signs, in­clude light-emit­ting diode (LED) signs, can­not have any revolving, scrolling or mov­ing ac­tions on the sur­face and can­not play video or au­to­mated mes­sages, signs can in­clude graph­ics, the amend­ment reads. Us­ing only al­pha­betic and nu­meric char­ac­ters, it reads, pic­tures or pho­to­graphs that “are not dis­taste­ful or dis­tract­ing” would be ac­cept­able.

Elec­tronic signs may not ex­ceed an il­lu­mi­na­tion of 7,500 nits dur­ing day­light hours and 750 nits be­tween sun­set and sun­rise, the or­di­nance reads. Writ­ten cer­ti­fi­ca­tion from the man­u­fac­turer stat­ing the “light in­ten­sity” was pre­set “not to ex­ceed the lev­els spec­i­fied” is re­quired.

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