Law on the placement of political signs

Published 12:32 pm Tuesday, February 20, 2024

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A few days ago I submitted a copy of North Carolina GS 136-32, the law controlling the placement of political signs in hopes the Bulletin would mention it. To note a few rules:

Section (d)(1) states that no sign shall be permitted in the right-of-way of a fully controlled access highway. This would include I-26 and Hwy. 74 including the ramps. Section (d)(2) states that no sign shall be closer than three feet from the edge of the pavement of the road. This is being violated all around the county.

Section(d) also states the following regarding sign placement, “The permittee must obtain the permission of any property owner of a residence, business, or religious institution fronting the right-of-way where a sign would be erected.”

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If a sign is placed anywhere, it must be done only with the permission of the owner of the property the sign is being placed in front of.

Regarding “Penalties for Unlawful Removal of Signs,” Section (e) states that “It is a Class 3 misdemeanor for a person to steal, deface, vandalize, or unlawfully remove a political sign that is lawfully placed under this section.” One would assume that any sign that is not legally placed per the rules can be removed as it would not be lawfully placed. Purely my assumption.

I would encourage persons placing signs or landowners who have a property that has had signs placed upon their land to see GS 136-32 in its entirety.


James Smith