Boys and Girls Club
By News-Argus Staff
Published in News on November 30, 2005 1:50 PM
The Boys & Girls Club received a warning Tuesday from city officials -- take down signs around Goldbsoro promoting the club's annual Pancake Day or face fines.
In an e-mail, Boys & Girls Club Director Mary Ann Dudley said the organization had received word that banners and signs displayed throughout the city, promoting the group's Dec. 3 fundraiser, were in violation of city ordinances.
The order, a result of numerous complaints from concerned residents, was for the club to remove all the signs or face a written warning and fine.
City Manager Joe Huffman said other businesses have been warned and fined since the City Council passed the ordinance limiting sign use, and that non-profits should not be given special treatment.
"We have got some regulations in place that eliminate the placement of signs in general," he said. "And it's hard to say one group can do it and another cannot."
He added that the ordinance is designed to address safety issues and make Goldsboro a more attractive city.
"Some of the signs were placed in a way that raised safety concerns," Huffman said.
Mrs. Dudley said in her e-mail that she told city officials that the signs would be down no later than 3 p.m. on Saturday and that the organization received permission from property owners before placing them.
Boys & Girls Club Vice President Donnie Barnes said the club completely understands that the city has a sign ordinance for the reasons stated by Huffman.
"This is our 29th year of the pancake breakfast and we've been putting signs out for 29 years," Barnes said. "We try very hard to make sure none of them block any traffic. We give the signs to property owners and ask them to put them out and use common sense when placing them to not block drivers' vision."
Barnes said he personally has not seen any signs that he thinks are a hazard to traffic. "But if they are, then they should come down," he added.
He said the sign ordinance could affect the future of the Boys & Girls Club's pancake breakfast. "Some of the signs are in prominent places," he said. "We may have to be more creative if the city won't let us put up signs anymore."
Huffman said that as long as current laws are in place, he and the council will enforce them.
"This council has been really trying to enforce the law," he said. "And that's what it will continue to do."
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