POLITICAL ADVERTISING & SIGNS
The City and State have established certain rules regarding the placement of posters, leaflets, banners and other items that fall into the category of political signs. These rules are designed to keep the city clean. Failure to comply may result in fines to the candidate or committee.
Basic rules include:
- You may not put political signs on public property. This includes utility poles,
street signs and trees.
- You must have the owners permission to display signs on private property.
- Size of political signs shall conform to Citys Municipal Code § 21.19.080
(see Political Sign Ordinance below).
§20008 Political advertisement requirements:
Any paid political advertisement that refers to an election or to any candidate for state or local elective office and that is contained in or distributed with a newspaper, shall bear on each surface or page thereof, in type or lettering at least half as large as the type or lettering of the advertisement or in 10-point roman type, whichever is larger, the words "Paid Political Advertisement". Such words shall be set apart from any other printed matter.
As used in this section "Paid Political Advertisement" shall mean and shall be limited to, published statements paid for by advertisers for purposes of supporting or defeating any person who has filed for an elective state or local office.
Requirments for Mass Mailing
§84305 Government Code. Requirments for Mass Mailing:
(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), no candidate or committee shall send a mass mailing unless the name, street address, and city of the candidate or committee are shown on the outside of each piece of mail in the mass mailing and on at least one of the inserts included within each piece of mail of the mailing in no less than 6-point type which shall be in a color or print which contrasts with the background so as to be easily legible. A post office box may be stated in lieu of a street address if the organization’s address is a matter of public record with the Secretary of State.
(b) If the sender of the mass mailing is a single candidate or committee, the name, street address, and city of the candidate or committee need only be shown on the outside of each piece of mail.
(c) If the sender of a mass mailing is a controlled committee, the name of the person controlling the committee shall be included in addition to the information required by subdivision (a).
The preceding Elections Code sections are provided for your information but are not necessarily all the codes which effect campaigns. Elections Code chapter 18000 outlines the penalties associated with violations of the Elections Code and Chapter 20000 houses the Truth in Endorsement Law. In addition, you are responsible for being familiar with the Fair Political Practices Commission rules and regulations. A copy of the Elections Code and the Government Code are available for your research in the County Law Library and the County Clerk-Recorder’s Office.
(c) The Superior Court, in any case brought before it by any registered voter, may issue a temporary or permanent restraining order or injunction against the publication, printing, circulation, posting, or distribution of any matter in violation of this section, and all cases of this nature shall be in a preferred position for purposes of trail and appeal, so as to assure the speedy disposition thereof.
Political Sign Ordinance (21.19.080)
O. Political Signs. Political signs shall conform to the following regulations:
- Residential Zoning Districts. In residential zoning districts, political signs shall not exceed thirty-two square feet in area and shall be subject to the following height limits:
- They shall not exceed a height of three feet within the required front yard setback and, for corner lots, the required setback for the side yard abutting a street.
- Outside of the setback areas mentioned above, they shall be six feet or less in height.
- All Other Zoning Districts. In all other zoning districts, they shall be six feet or less in height and thirty-two square feet or less in area.
- Removal if Associated with an Election. If a political sign is related to an election, it shall be removed no later than seven days following an election.
- Public Right-of-Way. Unless such sign satisfies the criteria specified in Chapter 11.30, no political sign shall be placed in the public right-of-way or on public property.
- Location. They shall not be located within one hundred feet of any polling place on election day.
- Non-Temporary Political Signs. Political signs that are not temporary, or are otherwise not within the exemptions of this section, are permitted in all zones subject to the provisions of this chapter pertaining to signs generally.