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Street sign law needs teeth

For several months now, members of the Selma City Council have asked that the police department and the code enforcement department pick up signs stuck illegally in rights of way over the city.

The signs are an eyesore and a nuisance. They sometimes fall over because they are not stuck far enough in the ground, or s vehicle runs over them, cutting a corner, and they are left as another chunk of litter on the sides of the street.

A lot of activity is occurring to make Selma more attractive to visitors and new residents. Sunrise Selma is investing in buildings and will rehabilitate them into apartments, condos and retail sites. In a few days, city officials will turn the dirt on the first phase of Riverfront Park, a multi-million dollar effort to create a scenic walkway through downtown.

It is a shame that people with cottage businesses or garage sales or other events would clutter up those efforts with signs placed along streets. If these people are so inconsiderate, then the council should do more than plead with a couple of city departments to pick up the signs. The council should consider an ordinance that would call for stiff penalties for those who would ignore the city ordinances.

A $200 fine for each sign and a morning in court would be a good start. Or, maybe, the offender should don stripes and spend the day picking up litter along the streets.