LEWISVILLE (CBSDFW.COM) – Whether it’s a lost dog or offers to buy or sell something, signs stuck in the ground at intersections or stapled to a utility pole are not allowed in Fort Worth. Code enforcement calls them bandit signs even though a lot of people think they’re okay because they’re on public property.
“Yes, because some people can’t advertise like others,” said Fort Worth resident Damon Rivera about why he thought the signs were legal.
No matter if they’re selling, buying, offering to predict your future, Fort Worth says the signs have no place on public right-of-way.
“You don’t have a right to do any business in a public place,” said Code Compliance Director Brandon Bennett. “A public place is for the enjoyment of the public particularly in a right-of-way.”
The signs are prolific. The city pulls up over 10,000 of them a year.
“They jam up the city’s mowers as we try to mow the medians,” Bennett said. “They blow out into the street and become hazards. It’s just a mess!”
Police officers, sanitation and code workers pull them up if they see them during their normal, daily duties. But budget cuts several years ago eliminated a formal bandit sign enforcement program. Now, the only crew dedicated to fighting bandit signs are two retired military colonels and they’re both volunteers.
“You know, no one else is going to do it right now,” said Lt. Col. William Lebo, USAF (Ret). “There’s only two of us that do it for the entire city. We really need more to help us.”
Now, the city is asking the public to help.
“If you see signs that are attached to telephone poles, utility signs they’re out in the median of the street, unless there a city sign-and you know a city sign because it will have city of Fort Worth logo or generally a traffic sign-anything other than that we ask for the public’s help in pulling them out because those are nothing more than litter,” Bennett said.
The city has information on line showing you what’s legal and what isn’t. And if there is any doubt about whether it’s on public or private property they ask you to call code enforcement to look into it.
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