Carson’s Restaurant should have had an inkling the sign it installed over the summer to replace a damaged one would cause a problem with Deerfield officials.
The Village Board of Trustees made that clear Monday when it unanimously denied Carson’s appeal for an exception to the language requirements of the ordinance becauae the restaurant chain ignored the rules and had a short memory.
Earlier: Village Board Rebukes Carson’s Sign Violation
“When you were before the Appearance Review Commission in 2006 your sign had a lot of verbiage,” Mayor Harriet Rosenthal said to Carson’s representative Ron Rosenbloom. “The Appearance Review Commission said so and we did too.”
At that time the sign was modified to meet regulatory requirements saying only the date the business was established in addition to its name. The new sign has the name in the center with “prime steaks” on top and “famous barbeque” beneath.
The problem with the new sign is its mention of a specific food type, “prime steak,” according to Village Manager Kent Street.
This time, rather than seek approval of the Appearance Review Commission, Carson’s installed it on its own. That too was part of the problem.
“Had you gone through the process and had a dialogue with us in good faith I might be inclined to make an exception,” Trustee Mary Oppenheim said. “We feel you’re not playing by the rules.”
After the Village discovered the violation, it sent Carson’s a letter July 11 informing the company of the infraction. A second letter followed August 14 and on Sept. 24 the Appearance Review Commission acted retroactively denying the request. The appeal followed.
Rosenbloom argued the new sign was near compliant. He also talked about the language being nothing more than a description of the company’s products.
“It’s an identification mark, an extension of the name,” Rosenbloom said. “It’s a nice sign, placed property and it complies with all of the requirements except one. It does not affect the health or welfare of Deerfield.”
Rosenthal was not persuaded. “Just because it’s done does not move us to ignore the regulation,” she said. “We like to keep our signs simple.”
Trustee Alan Farkas used some of the strongest language to express his unhappiness at Carson’s disregard for the sign ordinance. “When you treat us like this it’s a slap in the face of the ARC (Appearance Review Commission),” he said.