Monday, October 31, 2011
Chatham Borough resident says the veto protected the borough from litigation.
Monday, October 31, 2011
To the Editor Re: Mayor Vaughan’s Actions Concerning Borough Sign Ordinance The recent disagreement between Mayor Vaughan and Borough Council members about the constitutionality of the sign ordinance is a good demonstration of Mayor Vaughan’s responsiveness to Borough residents. In vetoing the ordinance Mayor Vaughan responded to public information in a way that protects the borough from lawsuits and recognizes individual self-expression. It is another example of why he deserves to continue as mayor of Chatham Borough. From a reading of Borough Planning Board and Council minutes these facts are evident: The facts make clear that notwithstanding the Planning Board attorney’s conflicting comments about the sign ordinance revisions, little if…
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Harris argues the limitations have always been part of the borough's ordinance.
Chatham Borough Mayor Nelson Vaughan said he had "no other alternative" than to veto a sign ordinance recently approved by the council that he felt violated the First Amendment rights of borough residents and left the borough open to a lawsuit. The ordinance amends an existing law, but several sections are retained. One such section prohibits billboards, political signs larger than 4-feet squared or political signs from being on display more than five days after an election or 30 days total. These restrictions, according to Vaughan, left the borough open to a lawsuit. "It's there in the First Amendment," Vaughan said. "Everything would be fine if you changed it from 'political signs' to 'all signs' because then it would be content-neutral…
Monday, October 24, 2011
Mayor concerned some limitations of the sign ordinance violate the Constitution.
The Chatham Borough Council voted unanimously Monday night to override Mayor Nelson Vaughan's veto of the amendments to the sign ordinance. The amendments to the sign ordinance passed unanimously on second reading at the Oct. 11 meeting. It includes several restrictions to political signs that were part of the original ordinance, including a limiting size to no more than 4-feet squared and can be displayed for no more than 30 days. It also prohibits billboards in the borough. At the Sept. 26 meeting, borough resident Ed DiFiglia told the council the ordinance could be construed as limiting political speech. He said the ordinance could be challenged and overturned in court. Vaughan exercised his right of veto, the first mayoral veto in the …
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
After more than a year, the council prepares to vote on a final set of changes to the sign ordinance.
Among the items up for approval at the Chatham Borough Council meeting Tuesday is, at last, a final set of changes for the sign ordinance. The ordinance outlines the guidelines for signs throughout the business, industrial and residential zones of the borough, including which signs require permits, how long signs can be kept on display and what times of the year different signs can appear. Properties with signs that violate the ordinance will receive notification from the borough's Zoning Officer, Vincent J. DeNave. The ordinance specifically forbids any policitcal signs from being posted in front of the Chatham Borough Municipal Building or the Library of the Chathams. Additionally, every tax lot is allowed only 1 sign per candidate per …
Monday, June 13, 2011
The Chatham Borough Council meets Monday evening.
Donna Cali-Charles and H.H. Montague from the Borough Planning Board will present the proposed sign ordinance to the Chatham Borough Council on Monday night. The council first tasked the Planning Board with revising the sign ordinance after an anonymous person revealed a loophole that did not prohibit advertising and nonpolitical signs from being placed on borough property, without limit as to number, by putting 12 signs on the lawn in front of the Chatham Borough Municipal Building. The Planning Board approved a draft of the new sign ordinance in January after looking at advertising, political and promotional signs in both the Main Street business zones and the residential zones. The new ordinance will close the loophole by explicitly …
Thursday, May 26, 2011
The township committee discusses signs that violate a municipal ordinance.
The advertising signs that have been cropping up in the township fail to comply with a municipal ordinance and may soon result in the owners of the signs receiving summonses. During the Township Committee meeting Thursday evening, the committee discussed the signs that have been making an appearance throughout the township, but particularly in commercial areas. “There has been an influx of advertising signs around town lately,” Mayor Nicole Hagner said. “Just so everyone is aware, township ordinances do not allow advertising signs. When our police department sees such signs, they take them down and call the owners of the signs so they can come and get them. But they crop right up again.” Hagner said it may get to the point where the …
Thursday, January 6, 2011
New measure to go before the Borough Council for approval.
The Chatham Borough Planning Board approved the new sign ordinance at its meeting Wednesday night. The ordinance will now go before the Borough Council with the board's recommendation for approval. All board members and alternates approved the resolution to send the ordinance before the council, with the exception of Joseph Mikulewicz, who could not be immediately reached for comment on his vote opposing the ordinance. The ordinance requires that signs for non-profit charities and events be approved by the borough Zoning Officer, Vincent J. DeNave, and allows non-profit organizations to apply for signs no more than twice a year. Those signs may be displayed for no more than 30 days. Political signs are limited to one sign per race per tax …
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Members of the Planning Board will present a draft ordinance at the Nov. 17 meeting.
Planning Board member H.H. Montague will lead efforts to draft a new sign ordinance for Chatham Borough to be presented at the Nov. 17 meeting. The board formed a Sign Ordinance Committee in October to work on a new set of borough laws regarding the display of signs on public property. The committee went before the Borough Council during the Oct. 25 meeting to present and review the current ordinances for signs on public property and what changes they thought should be made. Most of the council's questions at that meeting regarded political signs. Council members asked that the sign ordinance specify that no single real estate lot hold more than one sign per candidate or issue, that political signs not be illuminated and that they not be …
Monday, October 18, 2010
12 signs erected near municipal building over the weekend.
Welcome to "You Ask … Patch Answers," the weekly column for Chathamites looking for solutions to community problems or issues. One reader asked: Check out the new look for Borough Hall's front lawn. All the signs around town are awful. Camps, elections, fairs, markets, et cetera. Does this say charming bedroom community or tacky clutter city? Several borough residents noticed the 12 signs that appeared on the lawn of the Borough Municipal Building on Saturday morning. The Borough Council approved one due to size, but no ordinance prohibits size-appropriate signs from going up in front of the municipal building. However, a presentation by the Sign Committee to the Planning Board at Wednesday's meeting may outline future changes. The largest…