ELMONT, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Signs of the times? One suburban community said ‘no thanks’ and on Friday, was demanding that town code be enforced — with fines for those who post the hundreds of illegal signs hanging all over poles, fences, and trees.
They like to think of their community as the gateway to Long Island, but just over the Queens line between Belmont Park and their public library, residents complain that despite their best efforts to sweep and shine they are plagued with a proliferation of illegal signs.
“I am very passionate about this because this is a quality of life issue, a code enforcement issue,” Cheryl Lee told CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan.
Community leaders called the clutter an eyesore, and a distraction to drivers.
They want the ‘signs of the times’ removed.
Town of Hempstead’s law aimed at eradicating illegal signs on utility poles is not enforced here as it is in surrounding affluent villages, residents allege.
“We are trying to identify these commercial businesses that are taking advantage of our good will and bombarding our community with signs that are frankly very difficult to remove,” Nassau County legislator Carrie Solanges said.
The scofflaws use glue, leaving unsightly messes, loads of staples, zip ties, and sharp nails.
“The signs are so high we can’t get up there, and safely remove them, we need help,” library trustee, Tammie Williams said.
Williams pointed to current laws on the books that include a $250 fine levied against the owner or proprietor named on the sign. In a 4 block area near Belmont, 200 were counted.
“You can make a lot of money, put it back in the community, let’s work together, and do a community cleanup,” Williams said.
Town officials said they aggressively remove illegal signs from their 1,200 miles of roadway, and hope the county and state will take more cleanup responsibility on roads under their jurisdiction.
Homeowners in Elmont said if the sign code was enforced, the town would be pulling in thousands from the scofflaws.