From a friend - citizen action required! The post mentions Karen Ringstrom, a local activist who worked on electronic billboards and oil trains before she passed away last year.
I am writing to give you a nudge about a community event that is coming up on Thursday, November 10 from 6:00 - 8:00 PM at Northside Elementary School for citizen input for a master design for the Hwy 53 corridor (along the river). This is the kind of meeting that Karen would want our "billboard buddies" to attend, to remind officials to continue to regard sign control as a top priority in any planning for a visually attractive and welcoming community . . .billboard and sign control are good for business and tourism, and can detract from aesthetics, development and the local economy, etc. You surely remember!
I have personally noticed good changes from the ordinance that we put in place several years ago, such as lower and smaller signs, attractive pedestals for signs, longer hold-time durations on electronic messages (though people should be contacting the city's fire department about this and other violations they may see.(You can also use the the City's self-help portal and the fire department will investigate.) We want this slow but sure progress to continue.
Ordinances are not self-regulating. Karen and I talked many times about how sign control will take long term vigilance. I continue to monitor what I can find about City Hall business regarding billboards and signs. (There is a committee called the Billboard Negotiating Lease Committee that has been meeting in closed session and without published minutes since April, about particular two billboard lease renewals.) I continue to rely on Charley Weeth for his expertise.
If you can, please attend the public input session on Thursday. I already purchased a ticket for the YWCA event so unfortunately I won't be there, but I have weighed in with the Chair of the steering committee, Ryan Cornett.
I think this might also be a good opportunity to talk about local road priorities that benefit La Crosse residents and neighborhoods such as proper maintenance that could even alleviate more major road building, traffic calming, sensible traffic signaling, scenic enhancements, alternative transportation, and other policy choices that are definitely timely.