County expected to amend digital sign ordinance

The Pasco County Commission is expected to decrease the dwell time on digital signs from the current 60 seconds down to 15 seconds.

During a previous meeting, commissioners directed staff to make the change. Then, the issue went before the Planning Commission on Oct. 11, which recommended approval of the change.

Now, the County Commission is expected to adopt the change at its Nov. 27 meeting.

Commissioner Ron Oakley requested the change, noting the 60-second dwell time makes it hard to communicate the number of events that are planned at the Pasco County Fairgrounds, which has a digital sign.

“They have four or five events in a week or two; they want to be sure they advertise them all,” he said.

While other commissioners favored the change, Commissioner Kathryn Starkey expressed reservations. “Is that a safe idea? I’ve done a lot of research on signs. Changing signs like that, I’m just not a fan of them. I think they’re dangerous for the public. Everything I’ve read says they take your eye off the road,” she said.

County planning administrator Denise B. Hernandez said that regional attractors, by their nature, have many different events.

One message on the sign is unrelated to the next message, she said.

By reducing the duration of the message, Commissioner Mike Moore noted, “there’s a better chance the next time they (motorists) come by, they’re going to see something different.”

Published November 21, 2018

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