Senate Bill No. 48
(By Senators Beach and Unger)
[Introduced January 11, 2012; referred to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure; and then to the Committee on the Judiciary.]
A BILL to amend and reenact §17-22-4 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to outdoor advertising signs containing numerical displays composed of lights or movable components that change no more often than once every twenty-four hours.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §17-22-4 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 22. OUTDOOR ADVERTISING.
§17-22-4. General restrictions as to outdoor advertising.
The following restrictions shall apply to all advertising signs, displays and devices erected and maintained adjacent to any roads within the state road system, including federal-aid interstate and primary roads.
(1) No An advertising sign shall may not be erected or maintained which involves rapid motion or rotation of the structure or any part thereof of the structure: Provided, That an advertising sign that does involve motion or rotation which is not rapid to effect changeable messages shall be is permitted in accordance with legislative rules to be proposed by the Division of Highways of the Department of Transportation in accordance with the provisions of article three, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code.
(2) No advertising display or device shall may use the word "stop" or "danger" or present or imply the need or requirement of stopping or the existence of danger.
(3) No advertising sign, display or device shall may be a copy or imitate a traffic sign or other official sign.
(4) No advertising display or device shall may attempt or purport to direct traffic.
(5) No advertising sign shall may contain lighting which is not shielded and any lighting shall be of such low intensity as not to cause glare or impair the vision of the operator of any motor vehicle.
(6) No advertising display or device shall may be illuminated by any rapid flashing, intermittent light or lights. Signs, displays or devices otherwise in compliance with this article and rules promulgated by authority of this article which contain numerical displays in the form of light emitting diodes or other lights or movable components that change no more often than once every twenty-four hours do not violate the provisions of this article.
(7) No advertising display or device shall may be painted, affixed or attached to any natural feature.
(8) No advertising sign, display or device shall may hinder the clear, unobstructed view of approaching or merging traffic or obscure from view any traffic sign or other official sign.
(9) No advertising sign, display or device shall may be so located as to obscure the view of any connecting road or intersection.
(10) No advertising sign, display or device shall may be erected, outside of any municipality, within five hundred feet of any church, school, cemetery, public park, public reservation, public playground or state or national forest except markers for underground utility facilities.
(11) No advertising sign, the permit for which has been applied for subsequent to December 31, 2003, that is composed of stacked sign faces, one on top of the other, on the same structure, facing the same direction, each having more than three hundred square feet is permitted.
(12) No advertising device which is composed of separate sign faces in a side by side formation, on the same structure, facing the same direction, each having an area of more than three hundred square feet is permitted.
(13) No advertising device, the permit for which has been applied for subsequent to December 31, 2003, which contains a sign facing a single direction may have an area greater than six hundred seventy-two square feet: Provided, That cutouts and extensions which expand the area may be allowed to the extent the area is expanded by no more than thirty percent of its original permitted configuration.
(14) No more than one sign structure is permitted at a location.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to allow outdoor advertising signs to contain numerical content that changes no more often than once every twenty-four hours.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.