By JASON COX
Of the Keizertimes
A pilot program relaxing temporary business signage may be coming forth, as the Keizer City Council agreed by consensus Monday, July 13, to consider the matter.
It would allow currently-prohibited A-frame signs no bigger than six feet to be placed outside businesses on private property. Business owners would only be allowed to have them out while the site is open, and must be taken inside daily.
The code would designate “feather” signs – a feather-shaped flag bearing a company’s name – as an allowed temporary sign.
The changes would also limit real estate signs to 16 square feet. Currently these can be up to 32 square feet.
The decision came at a work session. It directs staff to prepare a text amendment to begin the sign code amendment process.
Some recommendations came from the Keizer Chamber of Commerce’s Economic Development and Government Affairs committee, which met about the issue earlier this year.
Community Devleopment Director Nate Brown said the proposals from the committee and others were “helpful,” but cautioned councilors about “radically alter(ing)” the code
“We want to keep a lid on signage,” Brown said. “… As restrictive as the code is, it was a response to the conditions that use to be on River Road. It was things people wanted to get a grip on.”
The signs must be at least 30 feet away from other signs in the proposal, and Councilor Jim Taylor said a lack of space limits could negate the effectiveness of temporary signage.
“I’m afraid if you have a complex with eight businesses, and they all have signs, that it isn’t going to help them because people won’t pay attention,” he said.
Joe Egli, president of the Keizer Chamber of Commerce, said local businesses “need some sort of stimulus.”
Mayor Lore Christopher liked the pilot aspect of the program.
“We’re in a really crappy economy and the whole reason was we had local businesses come to us saying, ‘Could you give us a break here? We’re dying on the vine. We employ local people and spend locally.’ … This would be nice to try for a year.”