Time for political signs to leave public property

By Gene Petriello - bio | email

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - Now that Election Day has come and gone, it's time for those political signs that are lining the public property to go away.

VDOT enforces the removal and said that if they are not removed with in a couple of weeks, there are consequences.

Keith Houston knows it's election time when he sees campaign signs every time he goes for a drive. "It reminds me of Christmas time a little bit. All different colors out there: blue red, you know."

In fact, sometimes it may feel like those signs stay up until Christmas.

"The day after the election, they should take down the signs because you get tired of riding by, seeing them," says Houston.

That would be nice, but VDOT -- which enforces the removal of the signs -- gives the campaigns about two weeks or so to come out and clean up the litter.

"We're really flexible because we know there are a lot of signs out there," said Dawn Eischen with VDOT.

But if the eye-sores don't come down in a few weeks after Election Day, VDOT maintenance crews start to take action.

"We'll send crews out, they'll start picking up the signs or they will contact the office and say the signs are still out there, you need to pick them up," adds Eischen.

If the campaigns ignore that request, VDOT could fine a campaign $100 per sign.

Maintenance crews would be doing the work to pick up the signs. O course, we know the work those crews do -- like mowing the lawn -- hasn't been done as much this year because of VDOT's budget concerns.

"If it's a matter of filling potholes versus removing signs, we're going to fill the potholes first," Eischen said.

Meaning, unless the signs pose a safety issue, they could be up on Keith's drive a little longer than he'd like this year.

"People get tired of seeing them the election is over. So whoever has won, has won so you know you need to just take them down," says Houston.

Generally, unless it is a safety hazard, signs on private property can stay up as long as you want them to stay up.

We're told from VDOT that here in Richmond area, campaigns are good about picking up the signs and they really don't have a problem. But it appears to be a different story in other parts of the state.

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