Thursday, April 16, 2009

April 21 Planning and Land Use Management Committee

On Tuesday, April 21 (2pm), the Los Angeles City Council Planning and Land Use Management Committee will hear testimony about the proposed revisions to the citywide sign ordinance.

The hearing will be at 2pm in Room 350, City Hall - 200 North Spring St., Los Angeles, CA  90012

To review the proposed revisions to the citywide sign ordinance FOLLOW THIS LINK:

This action is listed as Council File 08-2020

CPC 2009-0008  Negative Declaration, report from City Planning Commission and CA proposed Ordinance amending Sections 11.5.7, 12.05, 12.21, 12.22, Citywide  12.23, 13.11 and Articles 4.4 and 9 of Chapter 1 of the Los Angeles Municipal Code to establish total sign area limits for properties; establish area and height limits for individual signs; prohibit off-site signs, digital displays and roof signs; create new relief provisions for certain deviations from the sign regulations; establish administrative civil penalties for violations of the sign regulations; enact new criteria for the establishment of sign districts; and enact related technical corrections and other measures to reduce visual clutter and otherwise mitigate the potential impacts of signs on the visual environment. 

For more information, feel free to contact Will Wright, Director of Government & Public Affairs -

Briefly stated, the revisions address the following:

1. Roof signs are prohibited, except in Sign Districts. 
2. Comprehensive Sign Programs require a public hearing, with notification to owners and occupants within a 500 foot radius; and are only available to development sites with a minimum of 5 acres in addition to 100,000 square feet of non-residential floor area.  A new finding is added to ensure compatibility of proposed signs with residential uses within 500 feet.  Per existing procedure, Neighborhood Councils will be notified and receive a copy of any applications within the Neighborhood Council area. 
3. Appeals of Administrative Civil Penalties require 24 days notice of the hearing, with notification to owners and occupants within a 500 foot radius.  Per existing procedure, Neighborhood Councils will be notified and receive a copy of any appeal applications within the Neighborhood Council area. 
4. Right of Private Action is limited to owners and occupants within a 500 foot radius of an illegal sign. 
5. Sign Districts require mandatory sign reduction, so that every square foot of new digital or off-site signage requires the removal of more than one square foot of lawfully permitted off-site signage within the Sign District or an adjacent "sign impact area".  The community beautification finding is eliminated.  Relief from Sign District regulations is limited to a maximum 20% deviation.  A new finding is added to ensure that Sign Districts further the goals, objectives and policies of the urban form and neighborhood design chapter of the General Plan Framework. 
6. Only those proposed Sign Districts approved by the CPC as of March 26, 2009 will be "grandfathered".  The new ordinance will apply to all other proposed Sign Districts.

7. Sign Districts may be established for the purpose of prohibiting all new off-site signs.

8.  One of the purposes of a Sign District is to apply to areas that have unique entertainment of cultural attributes.

9.  A statement of intent is added to clarify that the ordinance's prohibition on digital displays applies regardless of any settlement agreements to the contrary.

10.  Other CPC recommendations separate from the ordinance:

- If the City Attorney so advises, the CPC recommends that the City Council include provisions in the ordinance to revoke business licenses of sign companies that repeatedly violate the sign regulations or do not pay penalties.

- Within six months of the ordinance's adoption, the CPC intends to adopt detailed guidelines for the review of Sign District applications.

- Within one year of the ordinance's adoption, the Planning Department will convene a task force to review the impacts of the ordinance and recommend any necessary changes.


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