Nine months after the Saratoga City Council adopted a sign ordinance, most business owners are in compliance, but some are not, a planner said this week.
Evidence of non-compliance are A-frame, or free-standing plastic signs along Big Basin Way that the ordinance specifically prohibits.
The city's ordinance was updated in April of 2012. The Council took action after learning that the ordinance had not been revised since the early 1990s, said Saratoga planner Cynthia McCormick.
"We wanted to make sure that our sign ordinance supported the First Amendment," McCormick said.
Several court cases have determined that sign regulations must be content neutral and conform to free speech rights projected by the First Amendment, McCormick explained.
Some businesses have been cited for noncompliance along Saratoga Sunnyvale Road and in Saratoga Village, McCormick added.
The attached PDF shows the Saratoga Village sign district handout with specifications for building signs, free-standing signs, temporary signs, electronic signs and window and so-called A-frame or free-standing signs.
The latter must be located within 10 feet from primary entrance to commercial building, not exceed six square feet in area and four feet in height, constructed of wood, metal or blackboard, not be affixed to any tree structure and only be displayed when the business is open. Plastic A-frame signs are prohibited by the ordinance.