The Beacon News 09/24/2012


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Aurora: candidate’s sign violates rules

AURORA — An aldermanic candidate’s political yard sign has been found in violation of a city ordinance. Matt Harrington, a candidate for the City Council seat in the far East Side’s 9th Ward, said shortly after putting up a campaign sign in his yard, he received a notice that the sign was too large and in violation of a city ordinance. City spokesman Kevin Stahr said the owner of the home in the 3200 block of Andover Drive received a notice from the city on Sept. 12 stating that the size of the sign was in violation of the city ordinance regarding political signs. The homeowner is Karen Watson, who Harrington said is his roommate. According to munici-

Harrington said other lopal code, political signs in a single-family residential cal politicians have signs area can be no more than 6 around town that also viosquare feet in area, or 2-feet late city ordinance. He said he has not decided if by 3-feet. According he will take his sign to Harrington, the down. sign in the yard is “We’re talking 7-feet by 4-feet. to lawyers and the “In single-family ACLU. We think it or residential areas, might be a freedom we want to make of expression since sure the standards it’s on private properare high to protect Harrington ty,” Harrington said. the quality of life for residents. That’s what people “(My lawyer) likes the 1st have come to expect,” Stahr Amendment aspect of this.” If the homeowner does not said. The homeowner has until remove the sign, an adminThursday to comply with the istrative hearing will take ordinance by removing the place, Stahr said. If the homeowner is found in violation sign, Stahr said. The city’s customer service of the ordinance, there are call center fielded a call about potential fines. “Obviously the preference the sign on Sept. 11 and the property standards division is that we give the homeownwas sent out to inspect the sign er two weeks to rectify the matter first,” Stahr said. the next day, officials said.

Aldermanic candidate Matt Harrington’s sign outside his home. The homeowner was issued a notice last week that the size of the sign was in violation of a city ordinance. Harrington is running for alderman in the 9th Ward. | PHOTO COURTESY MATT HARRINGTON
Harrington said the city chose to enforce ordinance “because they’re scared of what the ward wants.” “This is strictly harassment,” he said. Alderman Allan Lewandowski, who was appointed to the 9th Ward seat in March 2011, said he has not decided if he’ll make a run for the post.

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