Nova Scotia

Municipalities to maintain highway signs

The province is amending the Public Highways Act to give municipalities control over highway signs.

The province is amending the Public Highways Act to give municipalities control over highway signs.

Bill Estabrooks, Minister of Transportation, said there are hundreds of signs lining the province's highways.

Some signs obey provincial regulations and look good, while others —  not so much.

"To call it a dog's breakfast at some intersections would be an insult to a dog's breakfast," said Estabrooks. "The clutter is just really unacceptable, but in certain areas they're ... really highway inconveniences as you try to get out of [or] into an intersection."

Estabrooks said the current law isn't working, and the government can't get a consensus from businesses to make one standard sign policy. So the province decided to allow municipalities to write their own bylaws.

As it stands now, if a sign is not maintained in good and proper condition, the owner of the advertisement has to remove or repair it within 10 days of receipt of a written request to do so from the Minister.

Signs on highways of a speed of 80 kmp/h  or more should also be spaced a minimum of 100 m apart.

"Well it's certainly going to make more work for us, but I think that we can do every bit as good a job as the province did," said Bruce Morrison, warden of Victoria County. "Sometimes the bylaw process can be a long process and it will have to go to public hearings and have readings, etc., etc."

Morrison said some signs in his county are eyesores and need to be trashed.

Victoria County council will talk about creating a new bylaw at upcoming meetings.