TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY
LOCAL LAW NO. __1___ FOR THE YEAR 2016
A LOCAL LAW TO AMEND THE CURRENT TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY ZONING LAW IN REGARDS TO THE REGULATION OF SIGNS
Be it enacted by the Town Board of the Town of North Harmony, Chautauqua County, New York, the following amendments to the Town of North Harmony Zoning Law:
Section 1. INTENT
The Town Board of the Town of North Harmony, as the local legislative body with the authority to enact and amend zoning regulations, enact the amendments contained in this Local Law to the Town of North Harmony Zoning Law based upon the following findings:
It is the duty of the Town Board to encourage the most appropriate use of land within the Town of North Harmony;
The Town of North Harmony, and its inhabitants, will be best served if the Town strives to create a balanced and efficient pattern of land development that promotes economic stability and development; and
The amendments enacted by this Local Law, with the controls contained herein, will have no greater impact upon the community than similar uses contained within the Town of North Harmony Zoning Law and will also allow for clarification of the existing regulations governing signage and its impact in the Town of North Harmony.
Section 2. AUTHORITY
This local law is adopted under the authority granted by:
Article IX of the New York State Constitution;
Consolidated Laws of the State of New York, Chapter 62, Article 16;
New York Municipal Home Rule Law, Article 2, §10; and
New York Town Law, §264 & §265.
Section 3. ARTICLE II, SECTIONS 200 & 202 – DEFINITIONS – TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY ZONING LAW
The following term is added to Article II, Section 200 – “Listing of Definition Terms” of the Town of North Harmony Zoning Law in the appropriate alphabetical position:
The following definition is added to Article II, Section 202 of the Town of North Harmony Zoning Law in the appropriate alphabetical position and replacing the current definition if duplicative:
SIGN, WALL: A sign attached to or painted on the exterior wall of a building and not projecting away from the wall more than 12 inches. This does not include interior window signs.
Section 4. ARTICLE VI – SUPPLEMENTAL REGULATIONS – SECTION 617-SIGNS
The following purpose amendments shall be made to Article VI, Section 617 of the Town of North Harmony Zoning Law:
Purpose – The intent of this section is to enhance the Commercial and Industrial Districts by encouraging signs in character and scale with individual buildings. Additionally, the Town seeks to avoid a chaotic, unsafe, or unattractive clutter of signs by prohibiting signs or advertising devices which are inappropriate in size or type and to protect the character of the Residential Districts by strictly limiting signs within them.
1. Permits Required – Except as listed in paragraphs B2 and B3, a Zoning Permit shall be required before an outdoor sign is created, altered, relocated, or enlarged. A permit shall not be issued until all applicable sign regulations are met. All requests for permits must be accompanied by a plan drawn to scale showing the exact size, shape, location, and type of sign.
2. Exempt signs – The following signs shall be exempt from all regulations of this Section: public signs such as directional, street, traffic; and name plate signs not more than 2 square feet in size.
3. Signs Requiring No Permit – The following signs shall be subject to all regulations of this section but shall be exempt from obtaining a permit as required above:
Temporary non-illuminated real estate “for sale, rent or lease” signs. One on-site sign, up to nine square feet per side, is allowed in residential districts, and one sign, up to 32 square feet per side, is allowed in the business and industrial districts. For corner lots, one such sign shall be permitted per frontage.
Temporary non-illuminated real estate open house, household sale, estate sale, auction. These signs, up to four square feet per side, are permitted. Two directional off-premise signs and one on-site sign are allowed. Off-premise signs may be erected no more than 48 hours prior to the event start time and must be removed no later than the last day of the event.
Temporary Signs to include contractor signs, political signs, sandwich signs and fruit stand signs (see C4 below);
d. Temporary non-illuminated window signs and posters not exceeding 25% of each window surface. (Such signs are normally used to advertise specific products or sales and are removed or replaced on a regular basis.);
Posters, banners and signs, not exceeding nine square feet on residential uses or 32 square feet on non-residential uses, for a period not exceeding 60-days.
f. Location – Signs shall not be placed on off premise trees or utility poles.
C. Specific Regulations by Sign Type – Specific regulations shall take precedence over the more general sign regulations.
1. Wall Signs Attached to Buildings
a. No sign shall project more than 12 inches from the building wall on which it is attached.
b. No sign shall project higher than the roof line.
c. No sign shall be permitted to be mounted on the roof of a building above the roof line.
d. No sign shall extend higher than 18 feet in height as measured from the ground.
2. Freestanding Signs – Freestanding Signs where allowed shall be in accordance with the
a. Height – A maximum height of 18 feet from the ground to the top of the sign shall be allowed.
b. Setback – Freestanding signs shall be set back a minimum of 25 feet from the road edge.
3. Projecting Signs
a. The bottom of the sign shall be no lower than 10 feet and no higher than 15 feet above the
b. Projecting signs shall not exceed 12 square feet per side in area.
Projecting signs shall not project more than four feet from the side of the building.
4. Temporary Sign Regulations – The following specific regulations shall apply to temporary
a. Two contractor signs shall be allowed during periods from when the job commences and is completed. The sign must be removed if substantial progress on the job is not taking place. The maximum size shall be 10 square feet each.
b. Political signs up to 10 square feet in size shall be allowed 4 weeks before and 1 week after the election and it shall be the responsibility of the candidate to comply with this regulation. Permission from the property owner must be received prior to sign placement.
c. Sandwich signs, in Business Districts, shall be allowed when located on premise, when located within three feet of the building, and when there is at least nine feet of clearance between the sign and the edge of the street curb. The size of the sign shall not exceed 3’ x 5’ in size. However, sandwich signs shall not be allowed from November 1 through March 31.
d. Seasonal On-premise Roadside Stand Signs shall be allowed in accordance with the following conditions:
(1) Maximum Size – No more than 4 feet high by 4 feet wide.
(2) Maximum number – No more than 2 signs shall be used per property with more signs requiring a permit.
(3) Location – Signs shall not be placed on off premise trees or utility poles.
(4) Illumination – Signs shall not be illuminated.
(5) Time – Roadside stand signs shall only be permitted during the season in which the agricultural product being sold is available.
(6) Permits – No permit shall be required for seasonal on premise roadside stand signs.
e. Signs for quasi-public uses to include churches, schools, libraries, hospitals, and nursing homes shall be a maximum of 25 square feet in size, and shall require a Special Use Permit. If the sign is to be freestanding, it shall be setback 15 feet from the street edge.
5. Billboards shall only be allowed under the following conditions:
a. Off Premise Billboards
(1) NO new off premises billboards are permitted in any district
b. On premise Billboards
(1) Located in the TC-3 or I1 Districts as well as within 2,500 feet of the Southern Tier Expressway Interchange.
(2) A maximum of one (1) billboard allowed on premises.
(3) A maximum accumulative size of 300 square feet for any billboard located on premises
(4) In the event that there are multiple businesses on premises, those businesses are allowed one billboard with a maximum accumulative sign size of 300 square feet.
(5) Maximum height of 25 feet.
(6) Residential development signs – any signs allowed for a subdivision or multiple family development shall be allowed by a special use permit. A maximum size of 40 square feet shall be permitted and said signs may be illuminated utilizing exterior downward facing, shielded lighting in a manner that will not cause glare or reflection sufficient to constitute a nuisance or hazard upon a public street, highway, or adjacent premises.
6. Interior Illuminated Window Signs – Inside illuminated signs shall be a maximum of 2 square
feet each and no more than 5% of the front window area can contain such signs. No permit is
required. More than these maximum limits would require a Special Use Permit.
7. Home Occupation Signs – See Supplemental Section on Home Occupations.
8. Electronic Messaging Signs – Electronic messaging signs are prohibited in all districts except for price displays for gasoline stations.
General Regulations for Business Signs – The following general regulations shall only apply to signs for which regulations covered herein are not covered in other more specific subsections.
Maximum Number Signs (single or double sided)
District _ Primary Secondary
R1, R2, R3, R4, R5 1 0
AR, A 2 2
C1 2 2
C1-A 2 2
I1, I2 2 2
TC-1, TC-2, TC-4 2 2
TC-3 3 2
Maximum Size Sign (per side)**
R1, 10 sq. feet
R2, R3, 20 sq. feet
R4, 75 sq. feet
R5 40 sq. feet
AR, A 25 sq. feet
C1 32 sq. feet
C1-A 20 sq. feet
I1, I2 2 100 sq. feet
TC-1, TC-2, TC-4 2 32 sq. feet
TC-3 3 100 sq. feet
**Signage associated with “Home Occupations” shall be governed by sign regulations contained within Section 606 of the Town of North Harmony Zoning Code.
E. General Conditions
a. Every permitted sign must be constructed of durable materials and kept in good condition and repair.
b. Any sign which is allowed to become dilapidated will be cited by the Code Enforcement Officer and, if not repaired within 30-days or replaced within 60-days, may be removed by the municipality at the expense of the owner or lessee of the property on which it is located.
(1) No sign shall be so located that the sign might interfere with traffic, be confused with or obstruct the view or effectiveness of any official traffic sign, signal or marking or intersection.
(2) No sign shall be stapled, pasted or otherwise attached to utility poles or trees within a road or street right-of-way.
b. Ingress, Egress
(1) No sign shall be located which shall prevent free ingress or egress from any window, door, or fire escape.
(2) No sign shall be so placed that it will obscure light and/or air movement from a building.
a. No off-premise neon signs are permitted. Any existing off-premise neon signs must be removed within 6-months from the date of this ordinance.
b. Illuminating arrangements for signs shall be such that the light is concentrated on the sign with a minimal spillover cast on the street, sidewalk or adjacent properties.
c. Signs which contain include or are illuminated by any flashing, intermittent or moving lights are prohibited.
4. Moving Parts
a. No signs shall utilize moving parts.
b. Pennants, banners, flags, bunting whirligigs, inflatable signage or other similar attention-getting devices shall not be permitted where its purpose is to advertise or bring attention to a commercial business operation.
This provisions does not apply to the displaying of a national, state, or other flags not intended for advertising.
c. In the C1, C1-A, I1, I2, TC-1, TC-2, TC-3 and TC-4 zoning districts, in addition to other signage allowed by this law, businesses are permitted to display flags signifying that a business is “Open” in the following manner:
(1.) One (1) “Open” flag not to exceed fifteen (15) square feet may be displayed in a
manner that does not interfere with traffic safety on or off of the premise containing
(2.) The flag must be removed when the business is closed.
1. If a use ceases for a period of 1 year, all detached signs must be removed.
2. Such signs may be removed by the municipality at the expense of the owner or lessee of the
property on which the sign is located if the sign has not been removed after 30 days’ notice. All
State laws will be complied with in causing removal of any sign.
G. NYS Regulations
1. New York State Highway regulation related to outdoor advertising shall also apply where
H. Preexisting Signs
1. General Regulations Covered – Legally existing nonconforming signs shall be required to comply with the following general paragraphs:
a. Part E l. b, Dilapidation; and
b. Part F, Cessation;
2. Compliance – Sign owners notified of a violation shall respond within 30 days of receipt on how they intend to comply. Compliance shall take place within 2 months of notification.
Section 6. SAVINGS CLAUSE.
If any clause, sentence, paragraph, subdivision, or part of this Local Law or the application thereof to any person, firm or corporation, or circumstance, shall be adjusted by any court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid or unconstitutional, such order or judgment shall not affect, impair, or invalidate the remainder thereof, but shall be confined in its operation to the clause, sentence, paragraph, subdivision, or part of this Local Law or in its application to the person, individual, firm or corporation or circumstance, directly involved in the controversy in which such judgment or order shall be rendered.
Section 7. _ EFFECTIVE DATE.
This local law shall take effect immediately upon filing with the Secretary of State.