Council Adopts Downtown Sign Ordinance

8/2/11 – The Beaver Dam Common Council last night approved an ordinance that governs signage in the downtown redevelopment area. With the recent establishment of a Landmark Commission overseeing future improvements to downtown buildings, the Common Council last night approved the rules for signs and façade changes to make sure those alterations comply with a historic, turn-of-the-century century theme. Landmark Commission Chair Michael Firchow says the ordinance does not require existing property owners to make changes but will govern any future improvements. The ordinance passed with four dissenting votes. Alderwoman Dona Maly says it’s too confusing for your average person to understand. Alderman Robert Ballweg says it’s too restrictive and does not allow downtown business owners to make minor changes without incurring costs. Firchow pointed out that the ordinance allows for an appeals process. The ordinance replaces a sign moratorium that was put in place last year until the commission was established.