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State lawmakers go after spread of mobile signs

August 18, 2011 |  2:36 pm

A loophole in the state’s law on mobile billboards has spawned fleets of motor scooters, bicycles and sleds hitched to large signs and parked along Los Angeles streets.

On Thursday the state Senate approved a measure giving L.A. and other cities broader powers to get rid of the mobile ads, seen by many as a nuisance.

"We need to go after the new generation of mobile billboards, which are more annoying and dangerous than ever,” said Assemblyman Bob Blumenfield (D-Woodland Hills), who introduced the new measure. “This bill will help Los Angeles go after the fleets of mopeds with 10-foot signs being dumped all over the place.’’ 

Last year the Legislature gave cities the authority to regulate billboards mounted on trailers that are parked without being hitched to vehicles, but sign companies have found creative ways around the new rules. They have hitched the sign trailers to mopeds and bicycles or removed their wheels to get around the law.

The legislation approved Thursday allows cities to restrict parking of sign-bearing trailers that lack wheels, as well as those that are hitched to motor scooters. AB 1298 was previously approved by the Assembly but goes back there for approval of some minor amendments before heading to the governor’s desk.

-- Patrick McGreevy in Sacramento