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Village Takes Steps to Control Temporary Signs

Deerfield Village Board moves to regulate size of temporary business signs in reaction to Rosebud's sign in August. Zoning changes also approved for Lake Cook Road corridor easing burden for Deerbrook.

A move to regulate the size of permissible temporary business signs took its first step forward Tuesday at a regular meeting of the Village Board of Trustees when it agreed to send the project changing Deerfield’s ordinance to the Plan Commission for initial consideration.

In other action Monday, the Board approved changes to the Village’s zoning ordinance easing the way for retail businesses to open in the Lake Cook Road corridor and approved an ordinance requiring recycling of debris from construction sites.

Earlier: Village Reacts to Rosebud Sign

The Board approved recommendations of the Village Center Development Commission to limit temporary signs to 20 square feet in commercial areas. The next step will be consideration by the Plan Commission within the next two months, according to Associate Planner Kathy LeVeque.

When Trustee Barbara Struthers asked what prompted the study by the Village Center Development Commission, she said.

In April, Rosebud erected a 32-square foot sign in front of its restaurant advertising catering and party trays. At the time, both residents and Village officials expressed displeasure with the temporary marker.

Rosebud’s action was within Deerfield’s regulations, according to Code Enforcement Supervisor Clint Case.

The initial study by the Village Center Development Commission recommends a sign be no more than 20 square feet with no dimension exceeding five feet, according to LeVeque.

Patch will have more detailed stories later this week on the potential sign ordinance and other issues discussed by the Board.

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Walter White January 23, 2013 at 12:50 PM
Oh boy, thank God for that. I was really worried about the sign ordinance. Now how much do you want to bet that when somebody erects a 20 square foot sign there will be as much or more bitching than there was about the 32 square foot sign?
Jon Hall January 23, 2013 at 01:58 PM
What good are the ordinances if you aren't skilled in any way on how to plan and manage them with a balance of sensitivity and pride? Sensitivity to business owners. Pride in maxing tax yields from a flourishing business climate. The mayor has had her hand in the game for three decades, and the Lake Cook corridor and the NW downtown quadrant are what we have to show for it.
Joanne January 23, 2013 at 02:08 PM
We sure don't want a sign erected in front of a Deerfield business that is doing well! Let's "fix" that one--no worries about the rest of the town with "For Rent" signs on their empty storefronts.
Mike January 23, 2013 at 04:12 PM
Cannot believe this is what our Village managers worry about. At some point, can they look at the financial impact of their actions.
JK January 23, 2013 at 04:42 PM
Kudos to the village board for putting rules in place for businesses to follow. If not, we would be living in a town of tacky billboards! As for the businesses who can't seem to follow the ordinances, that's fine, I'll be happy to take my business elsewhere. For all of you who seem to have better answers for the village board, why don't you get from behind the computer and volunteer and make a difference for our community instead of playing Monday morning quarterback!
Walter White January 23, 2013 at 04:47 PM
It's called re-arranging deck chairs on the Titanic. All of our store fronts will be vacant but the signs will snap to attention!
Tyler Durden January 23, 2013 at 05:08 PM
Well said, JK. As for the rest of you whiners - I watched the Board meeting. When this issue came up for discussion, do you know who came to speak (other than the VCDC that made the proposal)? Nobody! Do you know who showed up for public comment? Nobody! Do you understand that there are people who are actually volunteering their time to make positive contributions to our Village?! Do you have any actual suggestions for them? Well show up! Call them! Email them! DO SOMETHING! What are your expectations? Are you going to write a comment and complaint about anything that isn't PERFECT? Look around, we have a beautiful town, with many thriving and happy businesses, great houses, great families, beautiful parks, phenomenal public services. What will it take before any of you have anything the least bit positive to say?!
Bringin' Down Briarwood January 23, 2013 at 05:41 PM
So you're telling me this a board that responds to public outcry? Can you point me in the direction of all the people screaming about the signage? And while you're at it, why don't you show me all the activity the board has taken on in response to all the people disgusted with Deerbrook/Cadwell Corners situation? I've only lived here two years, and it's pretty obvious this board has their own agenda - not one based on majority opinion. Nobody is denying there are great things about Deerfield. But its potential is not anywhere near fulfilled. So yes, there is PLENTY of room for reasonable criticism.
Tyler Durden January 23, 2013 at 05:51 PM
BDB - what does screaming/outcry do? How about actual ideas?! Are you criticising the Board for approving a recommendation that a committee of concerned cititzens that serve on the VCDC brought to the Board as a reasoned proposal to prevent the Rosebud fiasco from re-occuring? What do you want the board to do about Deerbrook that they haven't done? Have you made your actual ideas/suggestions known?! They just passed a revised zoning ordinance that is designed to encourage more retail and Harriett has indicated on a few occasions that a lot is happening behind the scenes. So, what is the agenda that you claim the government is pursuing? None of them are getting rich through any of their policies and they are all volunteers.
RB January 23, 2013 at 06:20 PM
It does make you WONDER about this board. What about making building owners take down signage for closed stores like Wonder, Woodfire etc. This is busy work, they pass ordinances out of an abundance of not knowing what else to do. Outdoor fireplaces, taking over maintenace of a banks front yard at Taxpayer expense, chicken coops, now they are looking at telling us how to compost. What's next? Surely, not an aggressive effort to rebuild our sales tax base - instead we'll get more busy work!
Bringin' Down Briarwood January 23, 2013 at 06:41 PM
RE: "Actual ideas" - You're getting ideas. It has been posted out here time and again that this is not what people want the board concentrating on. I have no clue why these silly issues are even raised to the Board level. I'll agree with you that this is not the place to do it, but it this is the third signage discussion is six months and NOBODY cares that much. Yes, I am criticizing the Board because the Board and VCDC are small, insulated groups, and they need to realize what a majority of the people want from their government. And once again, please point me to the large outcry over signage in this town. RE: Deerbrook - Ohhhhhhhh, have I made my ideas and suggestions known!! And from Harriet's responses, I have a great idea what her vision is, and it's HORRIBLY disappointing. It's taken all my strength not to put our back-and-forth about the vision out there for public consumption. (to be continued) As for what they haven't done, the list is too long. This isn't a problem that just popped up in the last three or four years. It's been DECADES. So what they haven't done speaks for itself in the final product.
Bringin' Down Briarwood January 23, 2013 at 06:43 PM
... You misunderstood my statement about an agenda. That wasn't specific to Deerbrook/Cadwell. From that last proposal, I have no doubt they have no agenda because it was pretty obvious they had no clue what they were doing and were representing the community horribly. Let's hope that "lots happening behind the scenes" that both you and I have read about will be: a) Transparent very quickly, rather than the wizard-behind-the-curtain planning going on right now; b) Filled with smart and creatives assurances for BOTH SIDES rather than for the developer only; c) Actually produces a shovel in the ground in the next 2-4 years. Wanna take bets?
Tyler Durden January 23, 2013 at 08:57 PM
BDB - 2 last points: 1) the current Board isn't to blame for what did/did not happen decades ago; and, 2) the Board does many, many things that aren't sexy, and go unnoticed - that's their job, to keep the Village operating and pleasant.
Bringin' Down Briarwood January 23, 2013 at 09:59 PM
If "operating and pleasant" are your criteria, I can understand why we don't agree. I'd argue their job is to keep the village strong, vibrant and moving forward.
Jon Hall January 23, 2013 at 10:59 PM
Tyler. You're missing the strike zone. The fix is in. Past comments indicate you're familiar with how the caucus / town meeting works from inside. 165 voters determined the outcome of the upcoming election in effect rigging the ballot at an obscure citizen gathering inside the window of the school vacation holiday in early Jan. When the game is rigged, volunteerism declines. When the game is rigged, the tax payer is cheated. You don't condone cheating or support election rigging do you? Volunteer applicants to boards and commissions in DF are scrutinized, screened, and prioritized for appointment by their board patrons and the mayor. Mayor recommendations are automatic. Anyone applying espousing a special interest out of the vision of incumbents' sphere of interest is rejected. It works this way in DF for a fact-as it does almost everywhere. Harriet doesn't welcome opposition any more than Bernie or Steve, or you. As a soaked and overpaying property owner, I'm sick of years passing as our business tax base erodes while the sign nazis carry the day and as unworthy businesses come and go. The funniest thing about town meeting was how Patch's coverage and my comments could be used get those dating and election signs removed within hours. Don't underestimate methods available to interested local taxpayers who volunteer their time writing comments here on Patch, hopefully to elevate the performance level of the locally elected boards and their volunteer defenders like yourself.
Tyler Durden January 24, 2013 at 12:01 AM
JH - no conspiracy here. I'm just a concerned, informed citizen. I have no problem offering critisism when its due, but I also try to be fair and to recognize good efforts too. The caucus is always publicized and open to anyone who attends. The dates are a creature of state deadlines and available time to organize. I find the Board and Mayor to be rational humans. They listen quite well to rational, well presented thought.
RB January 24, 2013 at 12:31 AM
Maybe they do listen to rational thought, sometimes....Certainly not all the time. I recall one of the board members expressing concern about the Village spending so much money on the Pedistrian underpass. He said the economy was getting worse and the Village should save the money, things may get rough before they get better. The Mayor was dead set against his idea and rammed the project through. It cost the taxpayers over $3 Million Dollars in local and Federal tax dollars. I recall Chuck Malk telling the board that adding more parking places to Deerfield Square would make for tight parking, but that he would do it if they made him. At that time the mayor was a board member but she spearheaded the requirement of more parking spaces. Two times in recent years paid consultants said that proposed stop signs made no sense and were a bad idea. The board over ruled and put the stop signs in anyway. I remember when the owner of the shopping center across the street assigned the close in retail parking spaces to the Prime Source office workers. Retailers rationally complained and the board went with the owner allowing office workers to park in front of stores and restaurants. One restaurant closed and left town blaming the parking fiasco. Where's Prime Source now? Rational thought does not necessarily survive what the board wants to do.

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