City Needs to Step Up Efforts on Snipe Signs as Tax Season Begins

These signs were taken in Tamarac this morning. This is typical how our streets and corners look around Tax Time.

These signs were taken in Tamarac this morning. This is typical how our streets and corners look around tax time.  Do not patronize businesses that advertise on these types of signs.

 

By: Sharon Aron Baron

You don’t need a calendar to know that tax season is around the corner, just follow the snipe signs.

If you aren’t familiar with the term “snipe signs” they are the pesky signs that businesses use to infiltrate our neighborhoods and streets with free advertisements. They usually put these eyesores out in the middle of the night, hence the name snipe because they are very sneaky as to when they do this.

I drive a lot throughout Tamarac, Lauderhill, North Lauderdale, Parkland, Coral Springs and Margate and while every city falls victim to these annoying signs, our city stands out as the worst in getting these nuisances picked up in a timely manner.

This time of year is no picnic for code enforcement who has found that just as quickly as they remove them, they return.

More snipe signs in Tamarac.

More snipe signs in Tamarac.

Our city knows that this time of year is especially the most difficult, so they must prepare for the onslaught of them, however, they don’t seem to be stepping up to the plate by either adding more personnel to the effort, or making more sweeps of our community like our neighbors in Coral Springs, who manage to do twice-daily sweeps to remove their signs.

How many sweeps does Tamarac code enforcement do? They only make a concentrated effort to pick them up on the weekends.

But don’t take it from me. Take a drive up to Coral Springs. Do you see rows and rows of snipe signs like you do on our corners sitting out for days?

Doubtfully.

According to Jaci Foster Code Compliance Manager with the City of Coral Springs, The word is spread throughout the office to head out and gather up signs first thing every Monday through Friday, starting at 7 a.m. when either an officer, supervisor, or code ranger observes snipe signs blanketing the city on their way into work. Then throughout the day, everyone is on the lookout for signs that might be replaced by businesses after lunch.

Coral Springs sign pictured being sent to a business with a citation on it.

Coral Springs sign pictured being sent to a business with a citation on it.

On Saturday and Sunday, they head out mid-morning to gather up signs again.  This includes garage sales, improper for sale or rent signs and other signage they see.

“As you know, sometimes as you pick them up, someone is placing one out, and it can be frustrating,” said Foster.

Tamarac’s office led by Code Compliance Manager Mark Woods said, “We don’t do daily sweeps for signs because during the week we are generally citing other types of violations such as overgrown landscaping, public nuisances, and violations that affect the public safety and welfare.” He said that their (Tamarac) sweeps are concentrated on the weekends.

Woods says that if a local business put signs in the right of way, they are placed into the robocall system. The system, initiated last year uses computer software to call the phone numbers up to 20 times per day. If the signs return, then they are given a citation, but only if they are a local business.

“We obviously cannot travel out of the city to cite a business in another city,” said Woods.

If a citation is issued, the first offense is $250 and $500 for each additional offense. Same thing with Coral Springs, however, Coral Springs will travel outside of the city to issue the fine. “The fine is placed on the person or business,” said Foster.

Travel through all of these cities and you can bet they all get pounded with signs. The real test is which city’s code enforcement officers pick them up quicker and prevents the same company’s from coming back.

Our code officers work hard, and if they don’t have the staff to get these swept up on a daily basis, Tamarac looks like the sore thumb in Northwest Broward.

About Sharon Aron Baron

Sharon Aron Baron Sharon Aron Baron is the Editor of Talk Media and writer for Tamarac Talk and Coral Springs Talk. Tamarac Talk was created in 2010 to provide News, Views and Entertainment for the residents of Tamarac and to give resident's a forum. We are not affiliated with the City of Tamarac. That's why this site can be occasionally opinionated and obviously open.

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  • Richard Boehner

    Have you seen the snipe signs around the public Library on Commercial Blvd around election time? Another great example of Do what I say not what I do.

    • Election signs are allowed. However, Coral Springs has tighter enforcement with theirs. Candidates must pay a fee before they place a sign in the city. They are required to place them in certain places and pick them up within days after the election. As far as I know, Tamarac does not have this strict type of enforcement.