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CITY OF NEWPORT BEACH <br />CITY ATTORNEY <br />DEPARTMENT <br />To: The Honorable Mayor and <br />City Council <br />From: City Attorney <br />0 <br />February 23, <br />i I <br />n' <br />1962 <br />y .fib <br />� <br />Subject: Prohibition of "For Sale" signs on residential property j <br />In January"the City Council asked advice on prohibiting "For Sale" <br />signs in residential districts. Upon review of this problem, I <br />find several provisions in the Municipal Code which have a bearing <br />on the subject. <br />In the chapter on signs in Section 8532, an exemption from the.re - <br />quirement of obtaining a sin permit is provided for "real estate <br />signs not exceeding twelve (12) square feet in area which advertise <br />the sale, rental, or lease of the premises upon which said signs <br />are located ". <br />In Sections 9103.01, 9103.11, 9103.21, and 9103.31, which apply to <br />the R -A, R -1, R -2, and R -3 Districts, respectively, the Code <br />specifically authorizes one sign not over six feet in area and <br />pertaining to the sale, lease, or rental of the property upon <br />which the sign is to be located. The sections applicable to the <br />R -4 District contain a similar provision, but authorize the sign <br />to be twelve square feet, and larger with a use permit, so long <br />as the sign is appurtenant to any use on the property. <br />In order to enact the prohibition against such signs on all resi- <br />dential property, it would be necessary-to modify the sections <br />mentioned above. <br />Research on the question of a flat prohibition of such signs has <br />not produced a court decision th ere the precise point was decided. <br />In an early California case entitled Varne 1, Green v. Williams, <br />155 Cal. 318, the Supreme Court of Ca ornia a d unconstitut onal <br />an ordinance of the city of East San Jose which flatly prohibited <br />billboards, signboards, or other structures erected for the purpose <br />of displaying advertising. The ordinance also had an exception as <br />to an advertising sign which advertised only goods, wares or mer- <br />chandise sold on the premises where the sign was located. The court <br />did not rule on the exception inasmuch as it held the entire <br />ordinance invalid. The court based its decision upon the conclu- <br />sion that the only basis forthe prohibition was aesthetic. In <br />reaching its decision, the court used the following language: <br />