Wynne Billboard Ordinance 868







WHEREAS, the City Council of Wynne, Arkansas has determined based on recommendation of the Wynne Planning Commission that the control of billboard advertising is in the best interest of the development of the City of Wynne; and


WHEREAS, billboards may adversely affect the safe and orderly flow of pedestrian and vehicular traffic within the city limits by contributing to poor visibility, congestion, and obstructions on the roadway, and might also result in harm to the welfare of the City by creating visible clutter, blight and by promoting a negative aesthetic impact within the city.





SECTION 1: Definitions 


Billboard - A billboard is a free-standing sign over 30 square feet which meets any one or more of the following criteria:


  1. a permanent structure sign which is used for the display of offsite commercial messages; or


  1. a permanent structure sign which constitutes a principal, separate or secondary use, as opposed to an accessory or ancillary use, of the parcel on which it is located; or


  1. an outdoor sign used as advertising for hire, i.e., on which display space is made available to parties, other than the owner or operator of the sign or occupant of the parcel (not including those who rent space from the sign owner, when such space is on the same parcel as the sign) in exchange for a rent, fee, or other consideration; or


  1. an off-site outdoor advertising sign on which space is leased or rented.


Billboards do not include on-premises commercial or non-commercial signs temporarily placed in residential lawns with the consent of the owner that are not greater than 16 square feet.  Billboards also do not include on-site real estate for sale signs on residential properties.


Commercial sign - Any outdoor sign, display, device, figure, painting, drawing, message, placard, poster, electronic messaging, billboard or any other thing which is designed, intended, or used to advertise or inform regarding an individual business, or to a product, commodity or service for sale or lease, or to any other commercial interest or activity, any part of the advertising or informational content of which is visible from any place on the main traveled way of interstate or federal aid primary highway, or any part of the advertising or informational content of which is visible from any place on the streets and highways within the city of Wynne.


Free standing sign - A permanently installed sign supported upon the ground by poles or braces not attached to a building.


Maintenance - The cleaning, painting, repair, or replacement of defective parts of a sign in a manner that does not alter the basic design or structure.


Owner - A person identified and recorded as such on official records.  For this ordinance, the owner of the property on which a sign is located is presumed to be the owner of the sign, unless official records required by this ordinance indicate otherwise.


Permanent - To set, fix, or secure in or on a support, thereby allowing such sign to become a fixed object to be used for the purpose of advertising or identifying any establishment, product, goods, or services.


Sign - Any device, structure, fixture, or placard using graphics, symbols, color and/or written copy to advertise, to announce the purpose of, or to identify the purpose of a person, entity, establishment, product, good, service, or event or to communicate information of any kind to the public.


Sign facing - The directional view of a sign visible from the approaching traveled way.


SECTION 2:  Regulated billboard sign requirements


  1. The regulated billboard requirements of this ordinance are to ensure there are no unplanned construction of billboards and that there are no pedestrian or vehicular traffic safety or hazardous situations developed within the city limits of Wynne because of poor visibility, congestion, and obstructions on the roads and highways and that the welfare of the city is protected by preventing visible clutter and blight and by promoting a positive aesthetic impact.


  1. Billboard requirements:


  1. There will be no new billboards allowed within the city limits of Wynne, Arkansas, capped to the total number of signs existing in the city limits at the time of the acceptance of this ordinance.


  1. As soon as practical after the effective date of this ordinance, a representative of the city shall compile an inventory of existing billboards within city limits. Following completion of the inventory, the city shall grant billboard permit for each existing billboard reflecting the location, size, height, zoning, and the degree of conformity with the requirements of this ordinance.  Only inventoried billboards may be issued alteration or relocation permits.  Billboard owners can accelerate the inventory process by providing the necessary inventory information for their billboards.  If owners have provided necessary inventory information for all billboards in their ownership, the city shall release billboard permits for that ownership, regardless of the degree of completion of the remainder of the inventory.


  1. Billboards shall not be altered regarding size, shape, orientation, height, or location without the prior issuance of a billboard alteration or relocation permit. All such permits shall require full compliance with the provisions of this ordinance, except that alteration permits are exempted from the 1000 feet spacing requirement of Item 6 below.  Ordinary and necessary repairs which do not change the size, shape orientation, height, or location of an inventoried billboards shall not require alteration permits.


  1. All existing billboards or those billboards under contract prior to the adoption of this ordinance are grandfathered within the city limits of Wynne.


  1. The number of commercial signs per billboard shall comply with the standards provided for in Regulations for Control of Outdoor Advertising on Arkansas Highways as provided for by the Arkansas Highway Department.


  1. Any altered or relocated billboards will have a maximum size of 14 feet by 48 feet and will be spaced no closer than 1000 feet from another billboard unless specifically exempted by another section of this ordinance.


  1. No billboard shall be in such a position that it obstructs or obscures the view of vehicular or pedestrian traffic in such a manner as to endanger the safe movement thereof.


  1. Each billboard, any single face of which is larger than 24 square feet, shall be set back at least 25 feet from any road or street right-of-way line, measured from the closest part of the sign.


  1. All billboards shall be erected in conformity with the front, side, and rear setback requirements of the zoning district in which they are located.


  1. No billboard shall be permitted whenever property zoned residential would be between the sign and the roadway toward which it is oriented.


  1. No part of foundation or support of any billboard shall be placed on, in, or over any public property, including public rights-of-way, or any utility or drainage easement, or upon telephone or utility poles, or natural features such as trees and rocks, except for the following:


  1. Signs, displays, and devices which locate, identify, mark, or warn of the presence of pipelines, utility lines, or rail lines and appurtenances thereto, including, but no limited to, markers used in maintenance, operation, observation, and safety.


  1. Public signs erected by or on behalf of a governmental body to post legal notices, identify public property, convey public information, and direct and regulate pedestrian or vehicular traffic.


  1. Any wood pole billboard may be upgraded to a monopole provided it conforms to the Arkansas Highway Department and federal highway regulations. Prior to replacement, a building permit must be obtained from the city of Wynne.


  1. Replacement, upgraded, or relocated billboards will be single faced and no more than two sides.


  1. After the effective date of this ordinance, it shall be unlawful for any person to erect, expand, move, or place any billboard which does not conform to the requirements set forth herein.


  1. All billboards other than those outlined herein are prohibited within the city limits.


  1. All billboard content will be reviewed and approved by the Planning Commission prior to implementation.


  1. If the billboard structure is abandoned, the structure shall be disassembled in its entirety back down to existing ground elevation at the sole expense of the owner.  


SECTION 3:  Applications and registrations


  1. Applications for existing billboards that are to be altered or relocated within the city limits will have a plan sheet showing, but not limited to, the following: location, materials list, methods of construction, anchoring and supporting, landscape plan, and certification of compliance to all federal, state, and/or city codes.


  1. Applications will be turned into the Planning Commission office before the deadline for the regularly scheduled monthly meeting.


  1. All existing billboards or those under contract prior to the adoption of this ordinance, will be subject to the annual billboard permit fee. Additionally, all billboard owners, unless otherwise exempted in this ordinance, will be required to register with the city of Wynne Building Inspector Office for purposes of obtaining a valid permit and payment of the annual billboard permit fee.


  1. The Planning Commission may take appropriate action on applications for permits under this ordinance and issue a decision within thirty (30) days thereafter. Should a decision not be reached within thirty (30) days, the application shall be deemed to be denied.


  1. Should an application be denied, the applicant may appeal the decision to the Planning Commission within thirty (30) days of the denial. The Planning Commission shall hold a public hearing at the next regularly scheduled meeting.  After the public hearing is closed, the Planning Commission shall decide based upon the regulations of this ordinance and by evidence supported in the record.


  1. While any appeal is pending, status quo of billboards or proposed billboards shall be maintained, unless by virtue of its physical condition the sign presents immediate and significant threat to public safety.


  1. Substitution of any non-commercial message, in whole or in part, on any existing, legal sign, is strictly prohibited without any permitting or approval.


SECTION 4: Fees and maintenance


  1. The purpose of the annual permit fee is to offset the cost to the city of Wynne of enforcement of this ordinance and should not be construed as a charge for the privilege of doing business.


  1. General administrative:


  1. Billboard alteration or relocation permit will be a one-time fee of One Hundred and Fifty Dollars ($150.00).


  1. Annual Billboard Permit fees will be for the period April 1 through March 31 (annually).


  1. Billboard owners will be required to apply and pay annual permit fees to the city of Wynne, Permit Office, not later than April 1 of each year. If fees are not paid by April 20 of each year, The Enforcement section of this ordinance will apply as stated below.


  1. Annual Permit Fees for billboards within the Wynne city limits will be Two Hundred Dollars ($200.00) annually (per billboard) for billboards larger than 4 feet by 8 feet. Any billboard 4 feet by 8 feet or smaller will incur an annual Permit Fee of Seventy-Five Dollars ($75.00) per billboard.


            No annual Permit Fee will be required for the following billboards:


  1. Signs, displays, and devices which locate, identify, mark, or warn of the presence of pipelines, utility lines, or rail lines and appurtenances thereto, including, but not limited to, markers used in maintenance, operation, observation, and safety.


  1. Signs advertising the sale or lease of property on which they are located.


  1. Public signs erected by or on behalf of a governmental body to post legal notices, identify public property, convey public information, and direct and regulate pedestrian or vehicular traffic.


  1. The owner shall maintain all freestanding billboards and the premises surrounding the sign in a clean, sanitary, and inoffensive condition, free of all obnoxious substances, rubbish, and weeds.


  1. All billboards shall be properly maintained at all times. Exposed surfaces shall be clean and painted (if paint is required).  Defective and/or damaged parts shall be replaced immediately.


  1. Construction and placement of all billboards must conform to the applicable traffic codes of the city and in no way restrict the safe view and/or efficient movement of traffic.


SECTION5:  Enforcement 


  1. Building inspector shall send a certified letter notifying the billboard owner of non-payment of fees, damage, safety violation, hazard, non-maintenance, or non-compliance with this ordinance. From the day of receipt of this certified letter, the owner will have twenty (20) calendar days to show the violation(s) have been resolved or/repair(s) have been arranged or completed.


  1. After twenty (20) calendar days, the Building Inspector will notify the Wynne Police Department and the billboard owner may be ticketed and fined up to Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00) per violation. Each day after the 20th day constitutes a separate violation for the purposes of enforcement.


  1. If the violation(s) is not addressed within sixty (60) calendar days of receipt of the initial certified letter, the city will withdraw the permit and have the billboard removed at the owner's expense.


  1. These time periods and limitations shall commence to run upon the receipt of the first letter received by the billboard owner from the city of Wynne for each individual violation. The time shall not be affected, re-initialized, or excluded in any manner, even by the receipt of subsequent letter(s) by the billboard owner for the same offense.


SECTION 6:  Repealer 


All ordinances, resolutions, and parts hereof in conflict with this ordinance are hereby repealed to the extent of such conflict.


SECTION 7: Emergency clause


            It is hereby ascertained and declared that there is a great need to establish this provision and it shall take effect immediately from and after its passage.








              Jennifer Hobbs, Mayor





Kevin Watts, City Clerk