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Brookhaven Town Supervisor Proposes Fine Against Illegal Roadside Signs

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BROOKHAVEN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Illegal roadside signs are in the crosshairs of the supervisor of one Long Island town.

As WCBS 880 Long Island Bureau Chief Mike Xirinachs reported, Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine has proposed a $250 fine for those caught posting illegal signs. One or two part-time employees would be hired to track the scofflaws.

In 2013, the town removed more than 10,000 of the offending commercial signs from along roadways and on utility poles, Xirinachs reported.

The signs are often for small businesses — house painters, landscapers, babysitters, psychics — or for politicians during an election season.

“We in Brookhaven will not allow any signs on the public right of way or public utility poles,” Romaine told CBS 2′s Jennifer McLogan. “That means no commercial signs, no personal signs and no political signs.”

Some residents, however, said the signs actually blend in and bring together the people of Brookhaven, which encompasses nine villages and 44 hamlets in Suffolk County.

“Some of it has to do with daily quality of life and impacting how the community functions as a whole,” said Jean Huttie, of Selden.

“I like them because there’s garage sales. It tells you what’s happening, where you can go for this and that,” said one resident.

“I’m in the commercial real estate business, so I depend upon signs,” said David Madigan, of Holbrook.

Others said the proposed crackdown is another example of government intrusion.

“When is enough enough? When are you going to stop regulating every single step we take?” a resident told Xirinachs.

“As long as they don’t block access to the actual road signs, I think they’re fine,” said Clive Maxwell, of Calverton.

“I see signs around, but they don’t really bother me too much,” added Mark Krull, of Mount Sinai.

But Romaine labeled the signs an eyesore and wants them gone. He outlined his plan for a cleaner and leaner Brookhaven in his State of the Town address

The proposal would need the approval of the Town Board in order to take effect. If adopted, regulating the signs would begin this spring.

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