'People signs' limited in Cape

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The Cape Girardeau City Council agreed Monday to limit where businesses can place people holding advertising signs. The new ordinance prohibits selling or soliciting on public streets, rights of way, intersections, medians or sidewalks in the city.

But private property can still be used, said Buford Snipes, who owns the Liberty Tax Service franchise on Kingshighway.

He arrived at the city council's study session Monday to question the new ordinance.

Since opening his business on William Street two years ago, Snipes has hired one or two people every tax season to draw attention to his office. He moved to a Kings­highway office near the Food Giant store in May but said he plans to use the same advertising method next year. He's not happy with the new ordinance, though he said he'll abide by the limits.

"I think it's an infringement on my ability to advertise," he said. "A little more important things -- arson, crimes and other issues -- are facing our city, and they're worrying about people out waving signs?"

Snipes said the so-called "people signs," which he calls "wavers" are paid $7 to $8 an hour, but the temporary positions are difficult to fill.

"This year I bought a robot for out in front of my office. It's a replica of the Statue of Liberty. The arm waves back and forth, and it's somewhat cheaper and more dependable than employees," he said.

He said he'll probably put the robot on a grassy strip near his parking lot and the shoulder of the road.

"I'm going to comply with it," he said. "I don't think [the ordinance is] a good idea, but overall I will try to comply with all city ordinances, including this one."

In other city council action:

Presentations

* Andy Juden, Main Street Levee District president, was honored for his years of service.

Consent ordinances

* Established utility rates for the city of Cape Girardeau by amending Chapter 22 relating to solid waste fees, and Chapter 29 of the city code relating to water rates and sewer service charges.

* Adopted the city's annual operating budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1.

* Rezoned 721 Sunset Blvd. and 723 Sunset Blvd. from R-2 to C-1.

* Rezoned 265 Notre Dame Drive from R-1 to R-4.

* Rezoned 824 South Kingshighway from M-2 to C-2.

* Granted a special-use permit to Morrill Development Co. for purposes of constructing, maintaining and operating mini warehouse units for storage at 824 S. Kingshighway.

* Authorized an application to the Missouri Department of Transportation for the Safe Routes to School Grant Program, and the city manager to execute all necessary documents.

* Authorized the acquisition of property for the improvement of Mount Auburn Road between Independence Street and North Kingshighway.

* Authorized the city manager to execute a project partnership agreement between the Department of the Army and the city for reconstruction of the Mississippi River Flood Protection System.

* Accepted a quitclaim deed and assignment of easements, and an assignment, from the Main Street Levee and North Main Street Levee improvement districts for the transfer of the Mississippi River Flood Protection System.

New ordinances

* Amended Schedule C of Section 26-121 by placing stop signs at Randol Avenue at its intersection with Janet Drive.

* Authorized the city manager to execute a contract with the Cape Girardeau County Transit Authority for Public Transportation Services.

* Approved the record plats of Thompson subdivision and of Kennedy's Addition.

* Appropriated funds for operating expenditures, debt service payments, capital expenditure and transfers.

* Authorized the city manager to execute a first amendment to the lease agreement with the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway to operate a maintenance and storage facility at Good Hope and Aquamsi streets.

* Authorized the city manager to execute a first amendment to the lease agreement with the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway to operate a railroad and other related activities on city property along the riverfront.

* Authorized acceptance of fee simple interest from the city of Jackson for the construction of LaSalle Avenue, and other actions relating to the project.

Resolutions

* Resolved to seek funding through the Community Development Block Grant Program for the North Riverfront Parking Area and authorized the city manager to file an application and administer the grant, if awarded.

* Authorized the city manager to execute an agreement with Dumey Contracting Inc. for the LaSalle Avenue Improvement Project.

* Acknowledged receipt of an annexation petition from the city of Cape Girardeau and set a public hearing regarding the proposed annexation.

* Authorized the city manager to execute a housing agreement with the Humane Society of Southeast Missouri.

* Authorized application to the National Park Service Historic Preservations Grant Division for the Preserve America Grant, and authorized the city manager to execute all necessary grant documents.

* Authorized the city manager to execute a demolition contract with Eagle Excavating LLC.

* Authorized the city manager to execute a demolition contract with Kevin Williams Excavating LLC.

Liquor licenses

* Conditionally approved of three liquor licenses; gave full approval to one new license; approved seven renewals.

Comments
Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: