Chapter 18.04


18.04.010    Title, authority, purpose, scope.

18.04.020    General provisions.

18.04.030    General sign regulations.

18.04.040    Sign permit requirements and process.

18.04.050    Prohibited signs.

18.04.060    Exempt signs—Allowed without a permit.

18.04.070    Temporary signs.

18.04.080    Residential uses and districts.

18.04.090    Nonresidential uses and districts.

18.04.100    Planned sign program.

18.04.110    Nonconforming signs.

18.04.120    Enforcement.

18.04.010 Title, authority, purpose, scope.

A.    Title. This chapter shall be known as the city of San Pablo regulatory sign ordinance.

B.    Authority. This chapter is enacted pursuant to the following provisions of state law: the California Constitution, Article XI, Section 7; Government Code Sections 38774, 38775, 65000 et seq. and 65850(b); Business and Professions Code Sections 5200 et seq. and 5490 et seq.; Civil Code Section 713; Penal Code Section 556 et seq.; and the city’s inherent police and zoning powers.

C.    Purpose. This chapter sets forth a comprehensive system for the regulation of signs which are within the corporate limits of the city. This chapter governs the number, size, type, location, and physical aspects of signs. By adopting this chapter, the city council intends to serve and advance various public and governmental interests, which include, but are not limited to, the following:

1.    To protect the right to free speech by the display of protected message(s) on a sign, while balancing this right against public interests; to balance the community interests against the free expression rights protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and corollary provisions of the California Constitution; to regulate signs in a manner consistent with the U.S. and California Constitutions, which are content neutral as to noncommercial speech and which do not favor commercial speech over noncommercial speech; and to provide for all persons, businesses, establishments and institutions adequate opportunity to express their message to the public by way of display of images on signs, in a manner that is consistent with community interests;

2.    To implement the sign-related goals, strategies and policies of the General Plan;

3.    To reduce hazards that may be caused or worsened by driver and pedestrian distraction caused by signs, especially those projecting over public rights-of-way or near roadway intersections or interfere with ingress and egress;

4.    To preserve and enhance the aesthetic and environmental values of the community, while at the same time providing adequate channels of communication to the public;

5.    To reduce excessive and confusing sign displays;

6.    To preserve and improve the appearance of the city as a place in which to live and to work and as an attraction to nonresidents who come to visit or trade;

7.    To safeguard and improve property values;

8.    To reduce “visual shouting matches,” visual clutter and pollution by setting reasonable time, place and manner limits on sign displays, which apply equally to all persons who are similarly situated;

9.    To protect the peaceful, quiet, residential nature of neighborhoods from intrusion or degradation by inappropriate commercial signage, to protect and enhance property values, and to encourage clean economic activity through the regulation of such elements as size, number, location, design and illumination of signs;

10.    To protect public and private investment in buildings and open spaces;

11.    To state and enforce city policies regarding new billboards;

12.    To promote the public health, safety and general welfare; and

13.    To ensure that commercial signs are accessory or auxiliary to a principal business or establishment on or near the same premises, rather than functioning as general advertising (advertising for hire).

D.    Scope. This chapter regulates signs which are within the legal corporate limits of the city, but not on city property or in the public right-of-way. Such signs on city property, public right-of-way, and private property leased or contracted to city for signage purposes are controlled by Chapter 18.06. Signs on property that is owned by public entities other than the city and its affiliated agencies, and over which the city exercises land use regulatory authority, are regulated by this chapter. If the city council creates any zoning overlay or approves a use permit, any sign rules in such overlay zoning district or use permit will prevail over contrary or conflicting provisions of this chapter. This chapter is regulatory; it does not abrogate, override, limit, modify or nullify any easements, covenants, leases or other existing private agreements that are more restrictive than this chapter. This chapter does not modify state or federal laws pertaining to the regulation or display of signs.

E.    Interpretation. This chapter is to be interpreted so that the result is consistent with the goals and policies of the general plan and the requirements of the First Amendment. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.020 General provisions.

A.    Compliance Required. Signs may be erected, installed or displayed only in compliance with this chapter. Unless explicitly exempted from the sign permit requirement, it is unlawful for any sign to be displayed without first obtaining a sign permit for a sign or planned sign program, subject to design review approval, and a building permit if required. A sign that is exempt from the sign permit requirement may still be subject to other requirements and restrictions set forth herein, and other permit and legal approvals, including those required by governmental or regulatory agencies other than the city.

B.    Responsibility for Compliance. The responsibility for compliance with this chapter rests jointly and severally upon the sign owner, the sign operator (if different from the sign owner), all parties holding the present right of possession and control of the property on which a sign is located, mounted or installed, and the legal owner of the lot or parcel, even if the sign was mounted, installed, erected or displayed without the consent of the owner and/or other parties holding the legal right to immediate possession and control.

C.    Violations. When a sign is displayed in violation of the rules of this chapter, or in violation of other applicable laws, rules, regulations, or policies regarding signs, each day is a separate violation.

D.    Interpretations. The development services manager, or such person designated by the city manager, shall interpret this chapter as the need arises; such interpretations may be appealed first to the planning commission and then to the city council. All interpretations are to be made in light of the policies of message neutrality and message substitution, and the overall purposes and intent of this chapter. Where a particular type of sign is proposed in a permit application, and the type is neither expressly allowed nor prohibited by this chapter, or whenever a sign does not qualify as a “structure” as defined in the zoning code or the building code, then the manager shall approve, conditionally approve or disapprove the application based on the most similar sign type that is expressly regulated or prohibited by this chapter, in light of the principles stated in this section.

E.    Message Neutrality. It is the city’s policy and intent to regulate signs in a manner consistent with the U.S. and California Constitutions, and which is content-neutral as to protected noncommercial speech.

F.    Message Substitution. Subject to the property owner’s consent, a constitutionally protected noncommercial message of any type may be substituted, in whole or in part, for the message displayed on any sign for which the sign structure or mounting device is legal without consideration of message content. Such substitution of message may be made without any additional approval, permitting, registration or notice to the city. The purpose of this provision is to prevent any inadvertent favoring of commercial speech over noncommercial speech, or favoring of any particular noncommercial message over any other noncommercial message.

Any on-site commercial message may be substituted, in whole or in part, for any other on-site commercial message; provided, that the sign structure or mounting device is legal without consideration of message content.

This message substitution provision does not: (1) create a right to increase the total amount of signage on a parcel, lot or land use; (2) affect the requirement that a sign structure or mounting device be properly permitted; (3) allow a change in the physical structure of a sign or its mounting device; (4) authorize the substitution of an off-site commercial message in place of an on-site commercial message or in place of a noncommercial message; (5) authorize the conversion of an on-site commercial sign to full- or part-time use as general advertising for hire; or (6) authorize the conversion of a static image display to a different technology for display of image, such as digital display.

However, whenever a given parcel or land use has not used all of its permittable sign area, then the unused portion may be exercised for the display of signs displaying noncommercial messages; in such a case, a permit is required only if the sign qualifies as a structure which is subject to a building permit under the building code.

G.    Discretionary Approvals. Whenever any sign permit, variance, conditional use permit, sign program, or other sign-related decision is made by any exercise of official discretion, such discretion shall be limited to the non-communicative aspects of the sign, as defined herein, architectural compatibility of the proposed sign with the surrounding area, and other factors listed in this chapter.

When discretion is authorized, it may be exercised to the following factors, as applicable: style or character of existing improvements upon the site and lots adjacent to the site; construction materials and details of structural design; the number and spacing of signs in the area; the sign’s display area, height, and location in relation to its proposed use; the sign’s relationship with other nearby signs, other elements of street and site furniture and adjacent structures; form, proportion, and scale; potential effect of the proposed sign on driver and pedestrian safety; potential blocking of view (whole or partial) of a structure or facade or public view of historical, cultural or architectural significance; potential obstruction of views of users of adjacent buildings to side yards, front yards, open space, or parks; and potential negative impact on visual quality of public spaces. Discretion may not be exercised as to the graphic design or message content of the subject sign; however, graphic design themes, including color and coverage ratios, may be evaluated for sign programs pursuant to Section 18.04.100, but then only as to commercial messages on signs within the area subject to the sign program.

H.    Prospective Regulation. This chapter applies to signs that may be proposed or erected in the future, including those for which applications may be pending or anticipated at the time of adoption of this chapter. It also applies to existing signs which are not legal under prior law. All existing, permanent, legal signs may continue in use, provided that any change in use must comply with this chapter. All signs set forth in Section 18.04.110 shall be abated as set forth therein.

I.    On-Site/Off-Site Distinction. Within this chapter, the distinction between on-site signs and off-site signs applies only to commercial speech messages. It does not apply to signs displaying noncommercial messages or messages providing factual direction information.

J.    Noncommunicative Aspects. All rules and regulations concerning the noncommunicative aspects of signs, such as location, size, height, illumination, spacing, orientation, etc., stand enforceable independently of any permit or approval process.

K.    Legal Nature of Sign Rights and Duties. As to all signs attached to real property, the signage rights, duties and obligations arising from this chapter attach to and travel with the land or other property on which a sign is mounted, installed or displayed. A sign permit is an official authorization of legal right to a certain use of a particular parcel of land; it is not a certificate of ownership. This provision does not modify or affect the law of fixtures, sign-related provisions in private leases (so long as they are not in conflict with this chapter or other applicable law), or the ownership of sign structures. This provision does not apply to temporary handheld signs or visual images which are aspects of personal appearance. This provision does not prevent a sign owner from removing a sign structure from a given location and installing it in another location, so long as all then-current legal requirements applicable to the new location are satisfied.

L.    Owner’s Consent. No sign may be placed on private property without the consent of the legal owner or the property owner and all persons holding the present right of possession and control. Nothing in this chapter is intended to or shall be interpreted to override any sign restriction provisions in private agreements, such as leases or CCRs (covenants, conditions and restrictions) in homeowners’ association agreements.

M.    Signs as Accessory Uses. Unless otherwise provided herein, permanent structure signs displaying commercial messages are to be accessories to, auxiliary to, or appurtenant to another main, principal or primary use on the same parcel.

N.    Policy Regarding New Billboards. The city completely prohibits the construction, erection or use of any new billboards and off-site commercial signs without complying with the provisions of this chapter. No existing, legal billboard may be converted to digital display, electronic changeable image sign, or to function as a “message center” as that term is defined in Business and Professions Code Section 5216.4. This provision shall control over any other more specific provisions to the contrary within this chapter; provided, that this billboard policy applies only within the regulatory scope of this chapter; it does not apply to signs formally authorized by city or the local successor agency (LSA) on city or LSA owned, leased or controlled property.

This policy does not affect existing, legal billboards, or prevent relocation agreements, as authorized by Business and Professions Code Section 5412, so long as such agreements are not contrary to other applicable law. This policy does not prohibit permanent directional signs which are under four square feet in area or otherwise conform to the current edition of the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices. Violation of this policy is declared to be a public nuisance which may be abated by any method authorized by law.

In adopting the “no new billboards” provision, the city council affirmatively declares that it would have adopted this billboard policy even if it were the only provision in this chapter. The city council intends for this billboard policy to be severable and separately enforceable even if other provision(s) of this chapter may be declared, by a court of competent jurisdiction, to be unconstitutional, invalid or unenforceable.

O.    Mixed-Use Zones. In any zoning district where both residential and nonresidential land uses are allowed, the sign-related rights and responsibilities applicable to any particular parcel or land use shall be determined as follows: residential uses shall be treated as if they were located in a zone where a use of that type would be allowed as a matter of right, and nonresidential uses shall be treated as if they were located in a zone where that particular use would be allowed, either as a matter of right or subject to a conditional use permit or similar discretionary process.

P.    The provisions of this chapter shall not be construed as relieving or limiting in any way the responsibility or liability of any person erecting or owning any sign, for personal injury or property damage resulting from the placement of such sign, or resulting from the negligence or willful acts of such person, its agents, employees, or workers, in the construction, maintenance, repair, or removal of any sign erected in accordance with a permit issued under this chapter; nor shall it be construed as imposing upon the city or its officers or employees any responsibility or liability by reason of the approval of any signs, materials, or devices under the provisions of this chapter. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.030 General sign regulations.

The provisions set forth in this chapter shall apply in all zoning districts except where otherwise expressly provided.

A.    Structural Requirements for Freestanding Signs. All structural regulations, building permit fees, and other regulations of the latest edition of the Uniform Building Code, as adopted by the San Pablo Municipal Code, shall be and are expressly made applicable to signs. The structural safety of freestanding signs shall be computed on the same basis as building permits provided for in the building code. The determination of value or valuation under any provision of this chapter shall be made by the development services manager.

B.    Utility Clearance. The owner of any sign shall maintain legal clearance from communications and electrical facilities. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this chapter, no sign shall conflict with any rule, regulation or order of the California Public Utilities Commission pertaining to the construction, operation and maintenance of public utility facilities.

C.    Compliance with Uniform Codes. All signs erected, installed, located or maintained in the city must comply with all structural provisions of the most recently adopted Uniform Sign Code, Uniform Building Code and National Electrical Code.

D.    Compliance with Other Approvals. A sign shall conform with all other applicable laws and to any regulations or conditions contained in any applicable county or state approval.

E.    Sign Content of Signs. The message content of on-site commercial signs shall be limited to the name and primary use of the business and shall be designed and located to be viewed primarily from the immediately surrounding streets.

F.    Preventing Ingress or Egress. No signs shall be erected, relocated or maintained so as to prevent free ingress to, or egress from, any door or window or any fire escape. No sign shall be attached to a standpipe, gutter drain, or fire escape.

G.    Projections of Signs into Public Right-of-Way. Wall-mounted signs shall not project more than six inches into a public right-of-way except where allowed by an adopted sign program pursuant to Section 18.04.100. Projecting signs and signs attached to a marquee, blade signs, awnings or canopies may project more than six inches into a public right-of-way, subject to Section 18.04.090(C).

H.    Vertical Clearance. Unless provided otherwise, the minimum vertical clearance of a sign shall be eight feet. It shall be measured from the lower edge of the sign to the ground immediately below such edge.

I.    Maintenance by Owner. Each sign shall be maintained in a safe, presentable and good condition, including the replacement of defective parts, painting, repainting, cleaning and other acts required for the maintenance of the sign. The chief building official or code enforcement officer shall require compliance or removal of any sign determined to be in violation of this subsection. The premises surrounding the sign shall be maintained by the owner thereof in a clean, sanitary, and inoffensive condition, and free and clear of all noxious substances, rubbish and weeds.

J.    Monument Signs. A monument sign shall not be located on a parcel less than five thousand square feet in size. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.040 Sign permit requirements and process.

Except as set forth herein, it shall be unlawful for any person, firm, corporation, partnership or other legal entity to authorize, erect, construct, maintain, move, alter, change, place, suspend or attach any sign within the city of San Pablo without first obtaining a sign permit to do so, and paying the appropriate fees prescribed therefor. All signs must be built and installed in conformance with the terms and conditions of the permit.

A.    General Requirement. No sign shall be erected or displayed without a sign permit or temporary sign permit, unless the sign is exempt under Section 18.04.060. The development services manager may require the removal, modification or relocation of an existing sign as a condition of sign permit or temporary sign permit approval if: (1) the proposed sign would be located on a site with an existing sign violation; or (2) the approval of the sign permit or temporary sign permit would result in a violation of the sign regulations.

B.    Sign Permit for Permanent Sign. A sign permit is required for a permanent sign including but not limited to the following types: wall sign, monument sign, shingle sign, multiple-story office sign.

C.    Temporary Sign Permit. Except as set forth in Section 18.04.070(A), a temporary sign permit is required for a temporary commercial sign. No permit is required for temporary noncommercial signs, but such signs must comply with Section 18.04.070(B).

D.    Design review of signs, pursuant to Section 17.18.090, is required for all signs that require a sign permit. Design review shall be conducted by development services planning staff or the planning commission, as set forth in Section 17.18.090(A)(4). Prior to approving an application for design review, the following findings must be made:

1.    That the proposal is consistent with the San Pablo general plan, this title, and Title 17, Zoning;

2.    That the design of the proposal is appropriate to the city, the neighborhood and the lot in which it is proposed;

3.    That the design of the proposal is compatible with its environment with respect to use, forms, materials, setbacks, location, height, design, or similar qualities;

4.    That the proposed signs and sign programs are consistent with any adopted sign design guidelines;

5.    In exercising its discretion, the decision-maker shall factor in the criteria set forth in Section 18.04.020(G).

E.    Right to Permit or Display. When any permit application fully complies with all applicable provisions of this chapter, and all other applicable laws, rules and regulations, and such laws, rules and regulations are not changed within the review period, then the permit shall be approved and issued within the required time. In the case of signs which are expressly exempt from the permit requirement, there is a right to erect, display and maintain such signs as are authorized by this chapter, subject to the applicable rules.

F.    Exemptions—Alterations. Signs legally existing prior to the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter are subject to a permit requirement only when a structural alteration is made, or the sign area is enlarged. No permit is required when only the sign face is changed, and the message continues to qualify as noncommercial or on-site commercial. In the case of such structural alterations or expansion, or electrical changes, a permit is required.

G.    Application for Sign Review. Any person seeking a permit for a sign, for which review is required, shall submit to the development services manager a written application for such sign review. The development services manager shall prepare a sign permit application form and provide it to any person on request. The same form may be used for both the application and the decision thereon. A single form may be used for multiple signs on the same site.

H.    Application—Format and Fee.

1.    Persons wishing to submit application materials in electronic form may consult with city staff about acceptable file formats and other technical requirements.

2.    A complete permit application shall be accompanied by a nonrefundable fee in an amount set by resolution of council.

I.    Application—Information. The application form may call for the following information:

1.    A sign permit application shall contain the location by street and number of the proposed sign structure, as well as the name and address of the owner and the sign contractor or erector.

2.    Three sets of a site plan indicating the position of the sign or awning in relation to the structures and other exterior improvements on the same parcel, with the linear frontage of building sides shown.

3.    Three sets of dimensioned plans, elevations and specifications showing the sign(s) and/or awning(s), method of construction, method of attachment to the building or in the ground, and a description of all materials. Plans need not be larger than eight and one-half by eleven inches if proper detail is shown. At least one set of the dimensioned plans must be in color.

4.    If the proposed sign is a new, freestanding structure, a site survey prepared and signed by a civil engineer or land surveyor with currently valid registration in the state of California.

5.    One set of photographs that show the site and location of the proposed sign(s) and/or awning(s) on the site, and each property immediately adjacent to the proposed site for context and placement and evaluation of impact, including impairments to visibility, to the neighboring properties.

6.    Elevation plan, fully dimensioned, showing height and size of each proposed sign, colors, method of illumination and materials of construction, and the exact location on the face of the building.

7.    When the area of the sign exceeds twenty-five square feet and the height of the sign exceeds six feet: structural plans and details, including calculations, for signs supported by existing structures, prepared and signed by civil or structural engineer, or architect, with currently valid registration in the state of California.

8.    For new sign structures with pier or pile foundations, a soils report prepared and signed by a soils engineer, or civil engineer, or geotechnical engineer, with a currently valid registration in the state of California.

9.    Electrical plans.

10.    A statement by the owner of the proposed sign as to whether the sign is to display commercial messages, noncommercial messages, or both, and whether the display face will be permanent, changeable, or a permanent structure with changeable elements. If the proposed sign is to be used to display commercial messages, then the applicant shall also state whether the message is to be on site or off site, and whether the sign will be used for general advertising.

11.    A statement or graphical description as to whether the proposed sign, or any part of it, is proposed to utilize any of the following physical methods of message presentation: sound; odor, smoke, fumes or steam; rotating, moving or animated elements; activation by wind or forced air; neon or other fluorescing gases; fluorescent or day-glow type colors; flashing or strobe lighting; liquid crystal displays or other video-like methods; digital display technology; live animals or living persons as part of the display; mannequins or statuary.

12.    A statement as to whether the property or parcel on which the sign is proposed to be erected or displayed, or any currently existing sign thereon, is the subject of any outstanding notice of zoning violation or notice to correct, including whether any such deficiencies are to be remedied by the proposed application.

13.    Written evidence of all owners’ consents, such as land owner or lessor.

14.    In the case of any proposed sign which is subject to a discretionary process, such as a variance, conditional use permit, or sign program, all information required by such process.

15.    The development services manager is authorized to modify the list of information to be provided on a sign permit application; however, additions may be made only after thirty days’ public notice.

J.    Completeness. The development services manager shall determine whether the application contains all the required information. If the application is not complete, the applicant shall be so notified in person or in writing within thirty days of the date of receipt of the application; the notice shall state the points of incompleteness and identify any additional information necessary. The applicant shall then have one opportunity, within thirty calendar days, to submit additional information to render the application complete; failure to do so within the thirty-day period shall render the application void. In such case, the application fee is not refundable.

K.    Disqualification. No sign permit application will be approved if:

1.    The applicant has installed a sign in violation of the provisions of this chapter and, at the time of submission of the application, each illegal or nonpermitted sign has not been legalized, removed or a cure included in the application;

2.    There is any other existing code violation located on the site of the proposed sign(s) (other than an illegal or nonconforming sign that is not owned or controlled by the applicant and is located at a different establishment) which has not been cured at the time of the application, unless the noncompliance is proposed to be cured as part of the application;

3.    The sign application is substantially the same as an application previously denied, unless: (a) twelve months have elapsed since the date of the last application, or (b) new evidence or proof of changed conditions is furnished in the new application; or

4.    The applicant has not obtained any applicable required use permit or conditional use permit. However, applications for such permits may be processed simultaneously with a sign permit application.

L.    Multiple Sign Applications. When an application proposes two or more signs, the application may be granted either in whole or in part, with separate decisions as to each proposed sign. When a multiple sign application is denied in whole or in part, the development services manager’s written notice of determination shall specify the grounds for such denial.

M.    Signs Which Are Part of a Larger Project. Permit applications for sign programs as part of planned commercial, office-professional and industrial development shall include the above information as part of a site development plan. When approval is sought for a development that includes one or more signs, then the sign aspects of the proposed development must satisfy the applicable provisions of this chapter. All such applications are subject to design review.

N.    Revocation or Cancellation. The development services manager may revoke any approval or permit upon refusal or failure of the permittee to comply with the provisions of the permit and the requirement of this chapter, after written notice of noncompliance and at least fifteen calendar days’ opportunity to cure. The notice and opportunity to cure do not apply when a sign, by virtue of its physical condition, constitutes an immediate and significant threat to public safety.

O.    Permits Issued in Error. In the event that a sign permit is issued, and the issuance is found to be in error at any time before substantial physical work on actual construction has been accomplished, then the permit may be summarily revoked by the city simply by giving notice to the permittee; such notice shall specify the grounds for revocation. In such event, the applicant may reapply within thirty calendar days for a new permit, without paying a new application fee.

P.    Other Sign-Related Decisions. Challenges to or appeals of sign-related decisions, other than approval or denial of a sign review or permit, do not require a particular form, but must be in writing, signed by the applicant or challenger, and state the matter challenged and the grounds therefor. Such appeals shall use the same form as other zoning appeals.

Q.    Conditional Approval. A sign permit may be approved subject to conditions, so long as those conditions are allowed by this chapter or some other applicable law, rule or regulation.

R.    Safety Codes. When a sign qualifies as a structure under the building code, a building permit shall also be required. Compliance with all applicable safety codes shall be a condition of all sign permits.

S.    Permit Denial. When a sign permit application is denied, the denial shall be in writing and sent or delivered to the address shown on the applicant’s application form, and shall state the grounds for denial.

T.    Timely Decision. Other than initial review for completeness, at each level of review or appeal, the decision shall be rendered in writing within sixty calendar days. The time period begins running when the application is complete (or is deemed complete because no notice of incompleteness has been given), or the notice of appeal has been filed, whichever applies. The timely decision requirement may be waived by the applicant or appellant. If a decision is not rendered within the required time, then the lower level decision shall be deemed affirmed.

U.    Appeal. Any decision on a sign permit application, or any other sign-related decision, may be appealed by any affected or interested person. Appeals go first to the planning commission, and then if the appellant is still not satisfied to the city council, after which judicial review may be sought.

V.    When Appeal Right Arises. The appeal right arises at the earlier of: (1) whenever a written decision is delivered to the application; or (2) the time for decision has run without a written decision. In this context, “delivered” means personally delivered or placed in the U.S. mail, whichever occurs first.

W.    Time and Method for Appeal. Any affected or interested person may appeal any sign permit, or other sign-related decision to the next level of review, by delivering a written notice of appeal to the city clerk within five calendar days of the subject decision. If the fifth calendar day falls on a day when city offices are closed, then the time period is extended until the next day that city offices are open. The notice of appeal must state particularly the matter appealed from, and the grounds for the appeal.

X.    Status Quo. During the pendency of review or appeal, the status quo of the subject sign(s) shall be maintained. This does not apply whenever a sign, by virtue of its physical condition, constitutes a threat to public safety.

Y.    Judicial Review. Following final decision by the city council, any concerned person may seek judicial review of the final decision on a sign permit application pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure Section 1094.5 or 1094.8, as applicable.

Z.    Notices. Written notices required within this chapter shall be deemed given on the earliest of the following: when personally delivered, when publicly posted, or on the day of mailing. Notices are deemed effective when sent to the last known address of the addressee. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.050 Prohibited signs.

A.    Unless specifically authorized under other sections of this title, the following types of signs are prohibited in all zoning districts:

1.    Unprotected Speech. Any message or image which is outside the protection of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and/or the corollary provisions of the California Constitution is prohibited. Examples include threats against the President or Vice President of the United States, material that meets the legal definition of obscenity, misleading or deceptive commercial messages, messages which promote illegal products or services, etc.

2.    Abandoned signs.

3.    A-frame, H-frame, and I-frame signs.

4.    Animated signs.

5.    Signs using banners, flyers, pennants, pinwheels, or two or more light bulbs in a wire string, except as set forth by Section 18.04.070.

6.    Billboards, except for new billboards as permitted on city property under Chapter 18.06, and mobile billboard vehicles.

7.    Confusing Signs. Signs (other than when used for traffic direction) which contain or are an imitation of an official traffic sign or signal, or contain the words “stop,” “go,” “slow,” “caution,” “danger,” “warning,” or similar words, or signs which imitate or may be confused with other public notices, such as zoning violations, building permits, business licenses, and the like.

8.    Despoliation of Nature. Signs tacked, posted, cut, burnt, limed, painted or otherwise affixed on trees, fields, vegetation, rocks, fences, utility poles or utility structures, or other natural features.

9.    Digital signs and digital displays, except as authorized for new billboards on city property under Chapter 18.06; electronic or manual reader board sign with movable text; animated signs or flashing signs other than clocks or temperature signs, that have moving parts or parts so devised that the sign appears to move or to be animated, and that blink, flash or emit a varying intensity of color or light which could cause glare, momentary blindness or other annoyance, disability or discomfort to persons on surrounding properties or driving by.

10.    Permanent signs containing fluorescent or day-glow colors as all or part of their copy, and signs illuminated by exposed light globes, i.e., clear light bulbs not turned away or properly shrouded or shielded from the viewer.

11.    Hazardous Signs. Any sign erected in any manner that would create a hazardous condition to pedestrians or traffic, either by obstructing the free use of exits, buildings or sites, or by creating visual distractions by using color, sound or glare.

12.    Stored signs may not be located on premises so as to be visible from beyond the property line after removal, prior to erection, or in storage.

13.    Vandalized Signs. Any sign damaged, defaced or painted by acts of vandalism must be repaired and restored by the sign owner or responsible party, or removed within three days.

14.    Moving signs including but not limited to rotating signs that turn on an axis, allowing different faces or images to be viewed from a single location.

15.    Off-site signs.

16.    Signs that exceed the height of a roofline and signs mounted on a roof or false roof.

17.    Signs painted on fences, walls, or roofs.

18.    Permanent sale or come-on signs.

19.    Vinyl fabric signs.

20.    Lettering or symbols on back-lit awnings.

21.    Statuary or representative figures used for advertising purposes.

22.    Signs encroaching more than six inches from the face of a building into a public right-of-way, when the sign or individual sign letters are mounted directly on the face of a building at the property line, except where allowed by an adopted planned sign program, pursuant to Section 18.04.100.

23.    Bus bench or bus shelter signs, except as provided by Section 18.04.060.

24.    Balloons and other inflatable devices or intended to attract attention; streamers, bunting, banners, except as allowed by Section 18.04.070; wind signs, abandoned signs, and any other sign deemed illegal.

25.    Signs emitting sound, odor, or visible matter and sign lighting that produces significant glare; signs that use lighting that flashes, blinks, or uses intermittent lighting; this rule does not apply to signs using digital displays.

26.    Signs of any size announcing home occupations, except for cottage food operations as provided in Section 18.04.080(B).

27.    Signs that have rust; chipped, cracked or peeling paint; hanging, dangling, torn or frayed parts; permanently burned-out bulbs; illegible letters or numbers; and graffiti.

28.    Signs for Prohibited Uses. An on-site commercial sign proposed for a business that is a prohibited use and which has not been established as a legal nonconforming use is prohibited.

29.    Signs for Unpermitted Uses. An on-site commercial sign proposed for an unpermitted use (e.g., a business that has not obtained appropriate permits such as a conditional use permit as required under this code) is prohibited.

30.    Dangerous or Defective Signs. No person shall maintain or permit to be maintained on any premises owned or controlled by him or her any sign that is in a dangerous or defective condition. Signs located in such a manner as to constitute a hazardous, dangerous condition or a traffic hazard or view obstruction of traffic control devices shall immediately be removed or repaired by the owner of the sign or the owner of the premises.

31.    Any vehicles parked within the public right-of-way or in a location on private property that is visible from a public thoroughfare and to which is attached any advertising sign except a sign painted directly upon or permanently affixed to the body or other integral part of the vehicle for permanent decoration, identification, or display.

32.    Pole signs.

33.    Signs in excess of the number, sign area, or height specified by this chapter.

B.    Planned Sign Programs. Unless otherwise indicated in subsection A of this section, the signs listed in subsection A of this section shall not be allowed by Section 18.04.100, Planned sign program. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.060 Exempt signs—Allowed without a permit.

Except where noted, the following sign types may be displayed without a sign permit; provided, that they conform to all rules and regulations applicable to that sign type. Although building permit requirements will be enforced where applicable, the square footage area of the following signs shall not be included in the maximum area of signs permitted for any nonresidential site or use:

A.    Governmental Signs.

1.    Public announcement, emergency, and warning signs necessary for public safety, information signs, or civil defense signs, by the city or a governmental agency authorized by the city;

2.    Signs identifying the existence and location of public utility underground facilities;

3.    Traffic control signs erected and maintained by an authorized public agency, including signs required by law, railroad-crossing signs, and such emergency or nonadvertising signs as may be authorized by the city council;

4.    Legal notices, licenses, permits and other signs required to be displayed by law; and

5.    Flags and emblems of a governmental jurisdiction that are not used for commercial advertising.

B.    Miscellaneous Signs.

1.    Memorial signs, historical plaques or tablets, and names of buildings and dates of erection, including signs cut into masonry surfaces or constructed of bronze or other incombustible materials, installed by the city or civic organizations that are recognized by the city council;

2.    Professional nameplates on commercial businesses, not exceeding four square feet in area and denoting only the name and occupation of the occupant;

3.    One nameplate and/or address number, not exceeding one square foot;

4.    Address numbers not exceeding ten inches in height;

5.    Commercial membership, credit cards accepted, patronage games, limited to one sign not exceeding one square foot for each face of the structure and mounted flush with the building or window;

6.    Posted restaurant menus identical to those made available to indoor diners;

7.     Barber poles located on a barbershop and bearing no advertising message;

8.    Signs on a public bus bench, public bus shelter, or any waste bin attached to a public bus bench or public bus shelter, which convey a commercial message as their primary purpose and that are authorized by a contract or franchise agreement with the city or applicable transit agency;

9.    Window Signs. Permanent business signs on windows of commercial buildings are allowed, provided the signage, including spaces between letters, symbols and numbers, encompasses both no more than ten percent of the total window surface area, and no more than four square feet. Window copy shall be limited to business identification, products and services, hours of operation, address and emergency information;

10.    Sign Maintenance. Painting or repainting of an existing advertising structure or the changing of the advertising copy or message is allowed, unless a structural change is made;

11.    Indoor sign;

12.    Lottery sign;

13.    Personal Property Sales Sign. Sign not exceeding six square feet and erected on private property for no more than three days;

14.    Product sign;

15.    Recycling Facility Sign. Sign on a machine in a recycling facility not over four square feet in area, identifying the type of material to be deposited, operating instructions, and the name and phone number of the operator;

16.    Service Station Sign. Gasoline service station fuel pump identification and/or price sign located on the pump top or pump face and not exceeding two square feet in area;

17.    Small Sign. On-premises signs, covering a total area of not more than two square feet, which do not include advertising material. Examples include signs for hours of operation, phone number, credit cards accepted, and trade associations;

18.    State Inspection Sign. One official state inspection sign constructed of a permanent material for each type of inspection service offered on site, located flat against the wall of a building and not exceeding four square feet in area;

19.    Vehicle or Trailer Sign. An identification sign painted on or affixed to a vehicle or trailer if all of the following apply: the sign is incidental to the primary use of the vehicle or trailer; the vehicle or trailer is used as a vehicle in the ordinary course of business; and the vehicle or trailer is legally parked within a single, delineated parking space;

20.    Flag. United States, state of California, or city government flags mounted or flown no higher than the maximum building height of that district;

21.    Murals. Murals, as defined in and restricted by this chapter, are allowed without a sign permit. Murals that do not meet the criteria set forth in the definition shall be considered wall signs and subject to the sign permit requirements.

Applications may be made to the city’s public art and mural fund for funding to partially defray the cost of mural design and installation. Such murals are subject to design review authority by city and will be subject to contractual requirements.

C.    Directional Signs, On-Site. On-premises directional signs are allowed without a sign permit, if the signs are consistent with the following requirements:

1.    Not more than two square feet in area;

2.    Not more than four feet high above grade;

3.    Mounted on a monument base or pole(s) bearing no advertising message;

4.    Not exceeding one square foot in area erected for the convenience of the public, such as signs identifying parking, pedestrian routes, public telephones, restrooms, litter receptacles, walkways, and similar features or facilities;

5.    No closer than five feet from any property line; and

6.    Located wholly within the site to which the sign is appurtenant.

7.    Such a sign may not include advertising material.

D.    Directional Signs, Off-Site. Off-premises directional signs are allowed for advertising places of worship and public assembly, hospitals, schools, charitable institutions, and other similar public and quasi-public uses, subject to applicable restrictions for directional signs, above.

E.    Temporary Signs, Noncommercial. Provided such signs comply with Section 18.04.070.

F.    Temporary Signs, Commercial. Certain temporary commercial signs set forth in Section 18.04.070. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.070 Temporary signs.

A.    Commercial Signs. The following temporary commercial signs are allowed without a sign permit, subject to the following restrictions:

1.    One project development sign identifying the proposed use and/or structure and persons or firms involved during the period of development or construction, provided such sign shall not exceed twenty-five square feet in area and is removed prior to occupancy.

2.    One on-site real estate sign installed by the owner or agent of the owner of any site, provided such sign is located entirely within the property, is unlighted, does not exceed four square feet in area and five feet in height, and is removed within fifteen days after the sale, rental or lease has been accomplished.

3.    One subdivision sign per subdivision, provided such sign is located on the subdivision, does not exceed twenty-five square feet in area, and is limited for a period of time not exceeding two years unless renewed by the development services manager. Off-site subdivision signs shall be permitted only upon approval of a sign permit.

4.    One open house sign for the purpose of directing prospective buyers to a single house or condominium that is for sale, provided such sign does not exceed four square feet in area and five feet in height, and is displayed only on the day of the open house.

5.    One commercial or industrial real estate sign per street frontage, or two signs maximum per parcel, for the initial sale, rental, or lease of property, provided such sign(s) shall not exceed twenty-five square feet in total area and six feet in height. The sign(s) shall be removed upon sale, lease or rental of the premises, or within six months, whichever comes first. Thereafter, one sign per premises not to exceed twelve square feet in area and five feet in height is permitted for the sale, lease, or rent of the premises.

6.    New-business attraction signs, including banners, pennants, streamers, and balloons, displayed during the first thirty days of occupancy of a new structure or operation of a new business and removed immediately after the display period. New-business attraction signs are not allowed in residentially zoned areas.

7.    Promotional sales signs in windows announcing sales or special features attached to or painted on the surfaces of store windows, facing out; provided, that such promotional signs in conjunction with permanent business signs on windows do not exceed twenty-five percent coverage of the total window surface area and no more than fifty percent coverage of a single window, and are removed immediately after the termination of the subject event and are in place for no longer than thirty days, two times per year, or fifteen days, four times per year, and located along the bottom of the window pane. Advertising in windows is not allowed in residentially zoned areas.

8.    Temporary banners for individual businesses are permitted provided the signs are consistent with the following requirements:

a.    One banner, up to a maximum of thirty-two square feet in size, is allowed per building street frontage. Buildings with two street frontages are allowed two banners under one permit; provided, that both banners have the same beginning and expiration dates, are on separate street frontages, and neither banner exceeds thirty-two square feet.

b.    Banners shall be allowed to be displayed for a maximum of sixty days per calendar year (two thirty-day periods or four fifteen-day periods with a separate permit being required with each successive display period).

c.    Banners shall be attached to a building on site at all times.

d.    Banners shall not project above the eave line of the building on which they are attached.

e.    If any part of the banner projects over the public right-of-way or public easement, the minimum vertical clearance shall be eight feet.

f.    No banner shall be illuminated or illuminated with artificial light.

g.    Banners shall be allowed for advertisement for on-site businesses only (businesses located within the building that the banner is attached). This requirement shall be tenant specific for multi-tenant buildings.    

B.    Noncommercial Signs. The following temporary noncommercial signs are allowed without a sign permit subject to the restrictions set forth in this section:     

1.    In commercial and industrial zones, the maximum area per sign face (single- or double-sided) is sixteen square feet. The maximum aggregate area for all signs is sixty-four square feet; this aggregate sign area applies whether the signs are located on an individual parcel or within a single commercial shopping center, business park, industrial park or other complex of related buildings. The minimum distance between temporary freestanding noncommercial signs is four feet.

2.    In residential zones, the maximum area per sign face (single- or double-sided) is six square feet per dwelling unit. The maximum aggregate area for all signs is thirty square feet. The minimum distance between temporary freestanding noncommercial signs is one foot. Notwithstanding the foregoing, no more than five such signs are permitted to be located in the front yard or street-facing side yard of any residential property, whether single-family, two-family, or multifamily.

3.    Location. No attachment to pole, fence, or tree. A temporary freestanding noncommercial sign shall not be attached to a utility or light pole, wall, fence, tree or other vegetation. No placement in, on or over the public right-of-way or on city property.

4.     No Obstruction. A temporary freestanding noncommercial sign shall not be placed at a location which obstructs or poses the threat of obstructing vehicular or pedestrian travel. The sign may not be located within areas regulated to preserve sight distance.

5.     Lighting. Temporary freestanding noncommercial signs shall not be lighted.

C.    Placement and Removal. Temporary freestanding noncommercial signs may be placed on a property for no more than sixty-five days at a time, four times each calendar year, with at least thirty days between placements.

D.    Commercial seasonal event signs including holiday bunting, decoration and displays, and one sign permitted for uses such as a Christmas tree lot, pumpkin sales, carnival, parades, and charitable events, subject to a sign permit approved by the development services manager, provided the signs shall be limited to thirty days per event from the date of erection or date of permit, whichever occurs first. Seasonal events signs shall not include promotional sales signs. Seasonal event signs are not allowed in residentially zoned areas.

E.    Sign Area. Although building permit requirements will be enforced where applicable, the square footage area of temporary signs shall not be included in the maximum area of signs permitted for any site or use.

F.    Prohibited Locations. Temporary signs shall not be displayed on any public property, any utility pole, fence, tree or other vegetation or within any public right-of-way.

G.    Other Temporary Signs. Temporary signs other than those listed in this section shall require a sign permit. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.080 Residential uses and districts.

A.    Allowed Signs. Signs allowed in residential districts and for residential uses are limited to those allowed in Section 18.04.060, Exempt signs—Allowed without a permit.

B.    Residential signs may not be used for general advertising for hire. Residential signs may display non-commercial messages that are protected by the First Amendment and corollary provisions of the California Constitution, real estate signs, identification signs, and garage sale signs. In order to protect and preserve the peaceful, quiet, residential nature of neighborhoods, no other types of commercial message signs may be displayed on residential dwelling lots with the exception of cottage food operations. For cottage food operations, one nameplate sign measuring no more than two square feet, which area counts towards the overall allowable area for signs, may be placed on the premises attached to the main building near the business entrance, indicating the property address, name of the business, hours of operation, contact information, and goods provided.

C.    Prohibited Signs. All signs listed in Section 18.04.050, Prohibited signs, are specifically prohibited in residential districts. In addition, residential signs may not utilize sounds, smoke, vapors, vibrations, motors, forced air generators, streamers, day-glow or fluorescent painting, digital displays or devices that flash, blink or use intermittent light.

D.    Area, Height, Location and Other Restrictions. The maximum area, height, and location of signs allowed in residential districts and for residential uses shall be as follows:

1.    One multifamily residential project identification sign is allowed per project, or two such signs for a corner parcel. These project identification signs shall be either wall-mounted signs or monument signs.

For a wall-mounted sign(s), the maximum sign area shall be ten square feet for one sign or ten square feet for each of two signs for a corner parcel, and the maximum height shall not exceed twelve feet above grade or the height of the ground floor; and

For a monument sign, the maximum sign area shall be thirty-five square feet per side and the maximum height shall not exceed four feet above finished grade. A monument type sign shall not be located in the front half of any required front yard or in any side or rear yard, except where a monument sign is located at the principal vehicular entrance to the project; if no front yard is required, no monument signs may be located within fifteen feet of the front property line. A monument sign at a side street entrance for a corner lot or a second wall-mounted sign may be installed on the side street exposure;

2.    One wall-mounted individual building identification sign per building in an multiple-building housing complex containing five or more units is allowed provided it shall not exceed four square feet in area or six feet in height;

3.    One nameplate per individual dwelling is allowed provided it shall not exceed one square foot in area and shall indicate only the occupant's name and/or house number; and

4.    Individual sign lettering for wall signs shall not exceed twenty-four inches in height and may be reduced pursuant to Section 17.18.090, Minor design review.

E.    Illumination. Special illumination must be shielded to prevent glare onto neighboring properties, and must be turned off during the hours of ten p.m. to seven a.m.

F.    Flags. Flags do not count toward to the total cumulative area of signs on the dwelling unit provided they comply with the following:

a.    Maximum number of flag poles: one.

b.    Maximum height of flag poles: not exceeding the roof line of the tallest legal structure on the lot.

c.    Illumination: Special illumination must be shielded to prevent glare onto neighboring properties and must be turned off after ten p.m.

d.    Maximum area of flags: thirty-two square feet using both sides of the display area.

e.    Advertising flags are not permitted. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.090 Nonresidential uses and districts.

A.    Allowed Signs. Signs allowed in nonresidential districts and for nonresidential uses are limited to those allowed in Section 18.04.060, Exempt signs—Allowed without a permit, and Section 18.04.070, Temporary signs.

B.    Prohibited Signs. Signs that are specifically prohibited in nonresidential districts and for nonresidential uses are listed in Section 18.04.050, Prohibited signs.

C.    Area, Height and Locations. The maximum area, height, and locations for allowed signs in nonresidential districts and for nonresidential uses shall be as follows, subject to the total sign area limits set forth in subsection D of this section:

1.    For a commercial building with one building frontage, the maximum wall sign area shall be:

a.    One square foot of sign area for every ground level linear foot of commercial building frontage; and

b.    A maximum of fifteen square feet on a rear wall facing a parking lot;

2.    For commercial buildings with multiple building frontages, such as a corner parcel or stand-alone building, the maximum wall sign area shall be:

a.    One square foot of sign area for every ground level lineal foot along the longest building frontage;

b.    One-half square foot of signage for every lineal foot of one additional side frontage of the corner parcel; and

c.    A maximum of fifteen square feet on a rear wall facing a parking lot, which shall be deducted from the allowable square footage of the building frontage(s);

3.    One wall sign or one monument sign is allowed for institutional uses, such as schools, religious institutions, and retirement homes, provided it shall not exceed twenty-five square feet in area, shall not exceed twenty feet in height or the height of the roofline, and shall have a vertical clearance of no less than eight feet from finished grade;

4.    One tenant directory sign for commercial, institutional and mixed-use projects is allowed provided it shall not exceed six square feet in area and six feet in height;

5.    One freestanding sign (pylon-mounted or monument sign) is allowed on the same parcel as the business to which it refers is located;

6.    Notwithstanding the maximum sign areas allowed by subsection D of this section, a single pylon-mounted sign is allowed for the uses listed below on sites that have a public street frontage of a minimum of one hundred fifty lineal feet. Such signs shall not exceed twenty-five feet in height or seventy-five square feet in area (single side or both sides if double-sided), or properties with one hundred to one hundred fifty lineal street frontage can have a freestanding sign with a maximum of twelve-foot height and forty square feet with at least a two-square-foot base from grade to the base of the sign and the sign shall not be more than six feet wide, or up to one hundred square feet in area for the following freeway-oriented uses located within a two hundred fifty-foot corridor on either side of Interstate 80 (the corridor shall be measured from and run parallel to the centerline of the freeway). This provision applies to the following uses:

a.    A restaurant or lodging establishment located, designed and operated to serve freeway through traffic;

b.    Service stations operating to serve freeway through traffic;

c.    A shopping center having six or more independently operated uses and adjoining the freeway or freeway frontage road;

d.    Regional serving establishments with a minimum of one hundred thousand square feet gross floor area;

7.    Double-sided projecting signs are allowed provided they shall not project from a building more than four feet in distance and shall not exceed ten square feet in sign area and be mounted no more than twelve feet above grade;

8.    Marquee signs may be allowed with dimensions unique to a particular building, subject to Section 17.18.090, Minor design review;

9.    Awning signs are allowed on the vertical valance of an awning provided the letters are within the height of the valance and the awning extends over a sidewalk no more than five feet from the face of the building with a clearance of eight feet above finished grade;

10.    A sign may be placed along the fascia of a covered walkway as long as the sign is within the height of the fascia;

11.    A blade sign no larger than four square feet in area may be hung beneath an awning or covered walkway extending no more than five feet from the face of the building and with a clearance of eight feet above finished grade;

12.    Corporate and institutional flags mounted on a flagpole may be allowed, subject to approval by the planning commission;

13.    Bulletin boards for public, charitable, or religious institutions are allowed provided they are located on the premises of the institutions and do not exceed six square feet in area;

14.    Wall signs shall comply with the following provisions:

a.    Individual sign lettering shall not exceed twenty-four inches in height and may be reduced pursuant to design review; and

b.    The signs shall not project more than six inches from the face of the building;

15.    For a freestanding monument sign, the maximum sign area shall be forty square feet per side, the maximum number of sides shall be two, and the maximum height shall be five feet above finished grade.

a.    Secondary sign shall be maximum four feet high and thirty square feet (for corner properties).

b.    Height of signs located on a slope shall be measured from the average grade of the two sides.

c.    One website address, phone number, or email address is permitted.

d.    Maximum three lines for single tenant, four lines for two tenants (two lines per tenant), one line per tenant (three or more tenants);

16.    For a freestanding pylon-supported or monument sign, the planning commission may determine that a lesser square footage is appropriate in a particular location where it finds that there are other appropriate means by which the business conducted on the premises can have the same degree of identification to the traveling and shopping public as that available to businesses on neighboring premises; and

17.    Notwithstanding the maximum sign height, no freestanding pylon-supported sign shall project above the roofline of the building it identifies, except that freestanding signs may be as high as the highest point of the roof if the planning commission finds it necessary to identify the business to the traveling public.

D.    Maximum Overall Sign Area. Notwithstanding the overall sign area permitted for any individual sign or combination of signs as set forth in subsection C of this section, the maximum permitted square footage of sign area for any building site shall be as follows:

1.    On building sites with a single street frontage, the maximum sign area permitted shall be one square foot of sign area per one foot of lineal building frontage, or no more than one hundred square feet of sign area for all signs for a single business or organization, with the exception of pylon signs.

2.    On building sites with multiple building frontages, the maximum sign area permitted shall be one square foot of sign area per one foot of lineal building frontage, plus one square foot per two feet of lineal building frontage on the secondary frontage(s), or no more than one hundred fifty square feet of sign area for all signs for a single business or organization, whichever is less, with the exception of pylon signs.

3.    On building sites with a rear or side wall facing an on-site parking lot or visible from a public right-of-way, a sign no more than fifteen square feet may be permitted, in addition to the sign allowance set forth in subsection (D)(2) of this section.

4.    Building sites with no exterior wall facing a public right-of-way:

a.    May have a multi-tenant wall-mounted sign up to thirty square feet on the side of the building, visible from a public street and such sign shall be in lieu of a monument sign.

b.    Two or more businesses occupying a building with a single entrance may have wall-mounted signs (within the maximum allowed) relative to the percentage of the total building floor area occupied by each tenant.

E.    Calculation of Area. The sign area of wall-mounted and monument-type signs shall be calculated as follows (for other signs, see definition of “area of a sign”):

1.    The area of a wall sign comprised of individual channel-type letters, numerals, symbols, or other similar components painted on or attached flat against the wall of a building, where such individual components are without integrated background definitions and are not within a circumscribed frame area, the total area of the sign shall be measured by the area enclosed by four vertical and horizontal straight lines outlining each word or symbol; and

2.    Where a freestanding monument or pylon-supported sign has two faces, the area of both faces shall be included in determining the area of the sign, except where the sign is double-sided or the two faces are placed back to back and are at no point more than two feet from one another, the area of the sign shall be taken as the area of one face if the two faces are of equal area; if two faces are of unequal area, the area of the larger face shall be used. (Ord. 2020-002 § 35, 2020: Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.100 Planned sign program.

A.    Planned Sign Program. Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 18.04.070, a planned sign program shall be required for any multiple-occupancy site or separately identifiable building group such as a neighborhood or community shopping center, or any other site containing at least forty thousand square feet of land area. Approval of the sign program shall be required for issuance of a sign permit. For a site on which a planned sign program has been adopted, the provisions contained in the planned sign program shall take precedence over the signage requirements of the applicable zoning district.

B.    Design Review. A planned sign program shall be subject to Section 17.18.090, Minor design review. The purpose of the program shall be to integrate signs with building and landscape design to form a unified architectural design statement. Design review shall be in conformance with Section 18.04.020(G). The planned sign program shall identify proposed sign locations for two or more buildings, building identification signs, sign types such as freestanding and monument signs, overall sign theme, and lettering styles, and such other information as may be required by the director.

C.    Planned Sign Program. Planned sign programs, approved prior to the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter, are allowed for themed areas unless the program is changed and becomes subject to approval by the planning commission. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.110 Nonconforming signs.

A.    Signs for Legal Nonconforming Uses. Subject to the provisions of this section, signs for legal nonconforming uses as defined in the zoning ordinance are permitted.

1.    Signs for a legal nonconforming use shall be deemed to comply with the provisions of this chapter if they comply with the sign regulations for the most restrictive zoning district that permits the nonconforming use as an allowed use. Such signs shall be permitted only as long as the nonconforming use is permitted. Any such sign legally existing on the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter, but which does not comply with the regulations of this chapter, shall be a nonconforming sign and shall be subject to alteration or removal in accordance with the provisions of subsection B of this section.

2.    Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary in this chapter, no new or additional sign shall be permitted for a nonconforming use after the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter.

3.    The owner of the property on which the sign is located shall have the primary responsibility for removing the sign that is required to be removed or altered under this section.

B.    Any sign installed or maintained without required permits is considered an illegal nonconforming sign and must conform to the current code. All temporary signs must meet current requirements. The following provisions apply to legal nonconforming signs:

1.    Repairs and Minor Alterations. A nonconforming sign may be maintained and repaired. A nonconforming sign may also be altered as a change of copy, sign face or color. Any such minor alteration cannot increase the sign’s nonconformity. Any repair that qualifies as a major alteration or expansion must meet the requirements of the relevant subsection(s) of this chapter.

2.     Major Alterations. Alterations that change the sign location, frame, or sign support structure require the sign to meet current requirements.

3.    Expansion of the Sign. Any expansion of a sign structure that affects a nonconforming sign shall meet current requirements. Affected signs are signs that must temporarily or permanently change the location or appearance of the sign, excluding sign face changes.

4.    Approval of a Discretionary Review. The director or applicable approving body may require a nonconforming sign to meet current requirements as a condition of a sign permit, use permit or special development permit.

5.    Discontinuance of Use. A sign associated with a use that has been discontinued for a period of ninety days must conform to current requirements. Notice shall be sent to the property owner who will have ten days to respond to the notice.

C.    Effect of Discretionary Actions. Any nonconforming sign shall be made conforming as a condition of any use permit or variance approved for the use or structure associated with the sign. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)

18.04.120 Enforcement.

A.    Permit Revocation. The planning commission is authorized and empowered to revoke any sign permit issued by the development services manager upon failure of the holder thereof to comply with any provisions of this chapter. The city council is authorized and empowered to revoke any sign permit issued by the planning commission upon failure of the holder thereof to comply with any provisions of this chapter.

B.    Public Nuisance. In the event any person should erect, alter, relocate or maintain a sign in violation of the provisions of this chapter, the same is declared a public nuisance which may be abated pursuant to the procedures set forth in Chapter 8.02. The city attorney is further authorized to bring and prosecute an action in a court of competent jurisdiction to enjoin such person from continuing such violation.

C.    No Duty To Enforce. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed as requiring the city to enforce the prohibitions in this chapter against any or all properties which may violate this chapter. The city envisions that this chapter may be enforced, in the city’s prosecutorial discretion, only as to a limited number of problem properties, if resources so warrant.

D.    In addition to all other remedies, the city has a lien upon the sign which it removes for the cost of removal and may, but is not required to, keep possession of the sign until the owner redeems it by paying the cost of removal. The city may dispose of the sign thirty calendar days after removal without further liability to the owner by giving the owner notice that the owner may redeem the sign by paying the cost of removal. The cost of abatement is the responsibility of the owner. Each person who erects or maintains a sign which is subject to removal is jointly and severally liable for the cost of removal.

E.    Emergency Removal. Notwithstanding the above provisions of this section, in cases of emergency, the chief building official may cause the immediate removal of a hazardous, dangerous or defective sign, without notice, pursuant to the summary abatement procedures set forth in Chapter 8.02.

F.    Cost of Lien. Any sign removed by the code enforcement supervisor or designees pursuant to the provisions of this section shall become the property of the city and may be disposed of in any manner deemed appropriate by the city. The cost of removal of the sign by the city shall be considered a debt to the city by the owner of the sign and owner of the property, and may be recovered by a lien and special assessment against the property, as set forth in Chapter 8.02.

G.    Nonexclusive Procedure. The procedures set forth herein constitute an alternative procedure and shall not limit or restrict the city from the civil, criminal, or administrative enforcement of this chapter in any other manner provided by law. (Ord. 2015-003 § 1 (part), 2015)