Friday, October 24, 2008


Scenic America is leading opposition to a proposal by the California Department of Transportation to convert the state’s 674 official changeable message signs into digital billboards carrying commercial advertising along with official safety messages. These state-owned signs are located on the right-of-way itself, not on private property, and have never been used for commercial purposes in California or any other state since such a use would be prevented by numerous federal and state laws.

The state also wants to permit so-called “roadside vegetation displays” on its highways. These displays are, in effect, commercial billboards made out of plant material, and are currently illegal under federal and state law and have long been banned in all states. An attempt by a California-based company to waive the laws prohibiting vegetative billboards on the right of way of federal highways failed in Congress in 2007, and the fact that this proposal has surfaced once again under the guise of the Caltrans proposal is a transparent and cynical attempt to circumvent that failure, this time with an official state collaborator.

In order to achieve its goals, California is asking for the federal government to waive the various laws it wants to break.


At October 25, 2008 7:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Exactly what drivers need, yet more distraction to occupy their thoughts while they hurdle along at 80 miles an hour inside three or four thousand pounds of steel.
Besides, there isn't enough water around to keep the ice plants and other ground cover alive along the freeways now.


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