Political Sign Regulations: How Strict Should They Be? [POLL]

How do you feel about political sign regulations? Vote in our poll and tell us more in the comments.


Political signs are a hot topic in Woodbury. The and public workshop, established its support for repealing a proposed section on the regulation of political signs.

The proposed paragraph on what is allowable when it comes to political signs is as follows:

"I. Political Signs: One or more signs, the total aggregate amount of signage per property not to exceed the greater of (i) 12 square feet, or (ii) the maximum aggregate amount of signage which would be allowed on the property under the regulations applicable to the district in which the property is located."

The consensus of the commission is to remove that section completely from the draft regulations. No vote has been taken on that matter.

Do you think that's the best choice for the town and its residents? Why or why not? Vote in the poll and share your thoughts in the comments section.


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joe_m August 31, 2012 at 01:16 PM
As posted before from the state constitution: SEC. 4. Every citizen may freely speak, write and publish his sentiments on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of that liberty. SEC. 5. No law shall ever be passed to curtail or restrain the liberty of speech or of the press. For those that want regulations, please read the state constitution. Speak freely, write and publish and no law are self explanatory. There is a constitution, law makers are sworn to uphold it not ignoring it. But then again, this is a blue state where the state and US Constitution has been ignored before.
Bob August 31, 2012 at 01:19 PM
I agree with political speech. I dont agree with a sign becoming a permanent fixture in town. I feel signs should only be allowed around elections time.
Concerned Citizen August 31, 2012 at 01:28 PM
This is one of the few times when the average citizen in town has a voice in the political process. Let them raise their voices, and let them be loud!
Sean M August 31, 2012 at 01:47 PM
Bob, your position is absolutely unconstitutional. Please read up on the legal information furnished to the town of Woodbury.
Sean M August 31, 2012 at 01:48 PM
Jaimie This is absolutely not correct. The Commission agreed to eliminate the current 7.5.10.I regulation from the regulations. The action was not to remove a proposed regulation, but remove the existing regulation
Sean M August 31, 2012 at 01:49 PM
What people are not understanding is there is something called the rule of law. Just because people want something does not make it acceptable to do.
Sean M August 31, 2012 at 06:59 PM
Barbara is another Democrat town committee member. "Overturn Overton" is not slander. I have no idea what in the world she is talking about. Overton received 309 votes in 2011 when he ran for Selectman. I guess the town does not like him either. Getting rid of Martin Overton will be the best thing that happens to Woodbury in a long time. Barbara's comments are all about her. Where is the mention of free speech, a supposed must for liberals? No where. The zoning commission must uphold the law, our rights, and the Constitution. I took an oath to defend the Constitution when I was sworn in. Then there is that pesky rule of law. The Overturn Overton sign is 32 sq. ft, much smaller than multiple signs in town. Is Barbara complaining about that? No. Did she complain when the Democrats and Woodbury First broke these limits? No. The only complaint she has had was twice against Tom Arras. I saw her at a meet and greet last year the Democrats had. I happened to be near Barbara when she spoke to Tom. She was very rude and excessively negative to him. Tom has kept the sign neat, even being so kind as to decorate it for various celebrations and holidays. I thought it was quite creative to use the copper hearts for Valentine's Day. The only people causing the problems are Barbara and her Democrat friends. They write letters that are patently false, making issues of things that do not exist.
Sean M August 31, 2012 at 07:05 PM
And what happened is highly relevant to why Tom has put up the Overturn Overton sign. He has stated repeatedly in zoning meetings his reasoning. His sign has been up over a year and the zoning commission, minus myself, has refused to deal with this issue. Where is his due process rights? Martin Overton has been the major reason it has not been dealt with. I have been on the zoning commission for almost 1 year. Martin is arrogant, abusive, and makes up the rules as he sees fit. 1. Overton instituted a 3 minute rule on Privilege of the Floor. He routinely enforced it on people who he disagrees with. At the last meeting, he never even looked at his timer for Bill Monti. Being inconsistent like this shows his bias. 2. I wished to discuss a matter relating to the regulation changes pending. Overton shut down the meeting after refusing me the opportunity to speak. Yet in September 2011, he brings up an item at the end of the meeting (the proposed changes) that was not on the agenda and pushes a vote to add to the agenda. It is okay for Martin to add things at the end of the meeting, but not me. Double standard again. 3. Martin withheld the legal opinion that advised getting rid of size restrictions for months, including scheduling a public hearing without giving the opinion to the commission. Overton took it all the way to Freedom of Information. Once the commission saw it, it was released on the spot. Complete waste of money.
Sean M August 31, 2012 at 07:08 PM
In doing this nonsense with hiding the legal opinion, the town paid for a public hearing, with Overton knowing about this legal opinion and the commission having not seen it. The commission voted down the changes because of this sandbagging by Martin. What Martin Overton does not get is he is not the king of zoning. He is tasked with running the meeting, not controlling it to whatever his agenda is. The rest of the commission, minus his lackey Bob Clarke, are on to him. The right thing to do is vote him out as chairman. The board is dominated by Republicans and one of them should take the chairmanship. I look forward to the end of Overton's reign of abuse and inconsistency in November 2013. We have just over a year left of this nonsense.
Sean M August 31, 2012 at 07:12 PM
I went through great lengths to put out to the public all the relevant information on the political sign debate. I documented with facts and the actual legal opinions. People can read for themselves and decide what the right thing to do is. http://woodbury-middlebury.patch.com/articles/letter-to-the-editor-resident-shares-political-sign-update Pay close attention to the last few lines in the June 14, 2011 legal opinion.
tom arras August 31, 2012 at 10:05 PM
Let's abide by the Constitution!
tom arras August 31, 2012 at 10:11 PM
Did Barbara Packer forget the reasons I gave her for the Overturn Overton sign last year, as it reads like she did? There's no slander Barbara, I want Overton's approach & the political sign regulation overturned. Had you been at the meetings or listened to the audio & available videos, I would think you'd see the reasoning. Mr. Murphy has also made it easy with his links above for you to bring yourself up to speed on the issue. Once it's fully resolved the sign will come down. I just happen to be 22+ months into what Martin described as a 3 month process! Don't fret- we'll get there.
John Mansfield August 31, 2012 at 11:57 PM
We have to
John Mansfield September 01, 2012 at 12:09 AM
Sorry on my last attempt to post. Clicked the button way to soon. We have to always consider the Rights of the individual versus offending some people. Just look at that westboro church for the perfect example. I support not restricting a persons free speech! Barbara Packer makes me laugh. I wasn't aware she was a member of the deomcratic town committee so i find it even more humorous. I remember seeing her at a town meeting back in june and was surprised at the way she behaved. On top of not knowing how a town meeting and vote was done she was the lone no vote on items that the town needed for safety reasons. Now it all makes sense. She is a D and Jerry Stomski is an R just as Tom Arras is, so she doesn't like them.
Voice of Reason September 01, 2012 at 01:23 AM
The Constitutionally (and ironically enough) correct answer in this situation is the first one. Folks shouldn't be so eager to ask Government to further restrict the Rights of the People, even when it applies to someone they don't like with opposing views. joe_m and Sean Murphy have continually posted relevant information. I urge readers to peruse the info they have provided.
Jaimie Cura (Editor) September 01, 2012 at 02:19 AM
Thanks Sean, for noting that. I have clarification from Zoning Commission Chairman Martin Overton as well. He stated via e-mail: "The commission agreed only to draft a repeal of the restrictions to political signs. Since this is a major change from what was previously published we have to go through public hearings again before a vote can be taken."


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