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As of lately, inflatables have been getting a bad rap in a number of different areas across the country due to a number of different reasons. The major problem is the lack of safety regulations in some states that have led to accidents at parties and other gatherings. Another problem stems from local disagreements on the placement of inflatable advertisements – do they cause distractions for drivers and others? Are they an overall eyesore?
The main issue seems to be zoning regulations that face inflatables that are already not in the good graces of citizens and city authorities at the same time. A story in PJStar discusses the problems that Peoria, Illinois, has been having:
“Today, the city’s planners are tasked with handling zoning enforcement. Peoria has seven planners. Some of those planners have been at the forefront of the business complaints earlier this year for following up on citizen complaints about inflatable signs advertising a business’ grand opening or requesting teardrop signs or pennants be removed. Most communities do have ordinances regulating signage, and almost every city in the state has some sort of complaint-based zoning enforcement policy.”
This push against inflatable (and other) signage seems to rear its head when it is least possible to do anything rational about it. Some surrounding towns have figured out how to handle any issues with promotional inflatables while Peoria has wasted time toying with its ordinances, according to the article:
“Earlier this year, businesses like Great Clips in Far North Peoria and Einstein Brothers Bagels were critical of City Hall for its enforcement of grand opening signs, including large inflatable balloons. Great Clips’ owner said other cities and villages roll out the red carpet celebrating a new business, while Peoria is the ‘exact opposite.’”
While you should always follow local laws about signs for your business, there needs to be some clarity between what is allowed and what isn’t. By making the laws and ordinances complicated, you cost businesses and town officials time and money. How about this – inflatable signs are allowed indefinitely! Doesn’t that sound like a good idea?