Monday, October 22, 2012
City regulations on banners stretched across roadways to promote community events will be reviewed in the wake of a vote today by the San Diego City Council's Economic Development and Strategies Committee.
Members of the committee unanimously requested that the City Attorney's Office develop amendments to current law to streamline the permitting and reviewing process for hanging such banners.
Councilman Kevin Faulconer said organizers of the annual Portuguese Festa promoted their more than 100-year-old event with banners in Loma Portal until they were told by city officials last year to take them down.
"One of the problems is now, for example if you wanted to do this, you would have to potentially get a special event permit,'' Faulconer said. "Time, energy, money, for something that's, I think, just plain silly.''
Festa organizer Evelyn DaRosa Feliciano called the banners a "time-honored tradition'' that are "anticipated, expected and desired'' but haven't been displayed for the past two years because of the city restrictions.
Gerrie Trussell, of the Mission Hills Business Improvement District, said the permit costs groups $10,000, twice as much as the actual cost of putting up the banners. It's important to keep the costs from being prohibitive, she said.
Another representative of the Mission Hills organization said its members have been trying for two years to get a banner permit from the city.
According to city staff, a structural engineer needs to examine the banners for safety so they won't fall onto roadway traffic.
The amendments will be brought back to the committee at a later date.