Fort Lupton leans toward sign enforcement moratorium


Fort Lupton City Council encouraged a moratorium on new parts of the city's sign code ordinances during a Sept. 14 study session.
Council made no decision, though. It can't make decisions during study sessions.
Several business owners complained about unfair enforcement of the sign code. The chief complaint pertained to temporary signs, such as those saying a firm was open or that it was looking for employees, especially as the coronavirus pandemic continues.
Wholly Stromboli Owner Melissa Rickman said businesses want to work within the rules.
"We want to work to grow the community and encourage businesses to be successful," she said. "A site plan (for her new signs) is a low priority for me right now. Some businesses, like Rachel's (Santiago's Restaurant) have been through a hell of a lot the last year. We have a long road to hoe before we are whole."
Dale's Pharmacy Owner Huey Dong said the signs were more permanent, whereas banners were temporary in nature and designed to help out potential customers.
"This new rule means we have to spend a lot of time and money that we don't have a lot of," Dong said. "Maybe there's a middle ground. We should be trying to unite businesses and the city. To make us go through the whole procedure is overkill."
"I'd say so," said Councilman Tommy Holton.
A representative from the Vincent Village subdivision admitted two signs on his property -- dealing with dumping paint cans on his property -- were out of compliance with code. He told council people don't want to pay the money it costs to take the items to the county landfill in Erie.
"Temporary signs are important for these businesses," Mayor Zo Stieber said. "We allow garage sale signs on torn-up cardboard on street corners all over town. But we won't allow temporary signs for our businesses? That's ridiculous."
Fort Lupton planner Todd Hodges said the city was working to improve the code by making it more flexible.
"The sign code is irritating," Hodges said. "We know the sign code isn't perfect. We do have the ability to do temporary signs. The key is to make sure they are appropriate signs."

Fort Lupton, business, signs, moratorium, Fort Lupton police, police chief John Fryar


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