Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: billboards


SIGNS: Ban billboards along our highways

Recent discussions about billboards (off-premise signs) miss several aspects.

Communities without billboards are safer, more attractive, livable and prosperous. Legitimate businesses compete by the values of their goods and services rather than by off-premise advertising. Only sign fabricators, depressed landowners, predatory businesses and their lobbyists benefit from billboards.

Billboards are classic parasites. They “live off” our highways, distracting motorists and denigrating our environment – while contributing nothing to constructing, maintaining or beautification of our highways. They’re like poison ivy sucking the life blood from oak trees.

Billboard owners are hypocrites. One of the largest billboard owners resided in a city

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TACOMA: Billboard blight threatens civic projects

Tacomans should be excited about two great civic projects that are being built in downtown Tacoma. The $2.6 million Prairie Line Trail project will run through the University of Washington Tacoma, cross Pacific Avenue and pass adjacent to the Tacoma Art Museum.

The museum itself is undergoing a $15.5 expansion and will soon house the Haub Family Collection of Western American art.

Unfortunately, a single rusty dilapidated billboard threatens to squander much of the potential benefit of these civic projects. Sitting right in the middle of the proposed Prairie Line Trail, the billboard with absurdly force the pedestrian path to

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LOBBYISTS: Money seems to open doors

Re: “In Olympia, lobbyists grabs the tab – and the connection” (editorial, 5-5).

Lobbyists’ ability to access our elected legislators rings true for me; my multiple efforts to speak with legislators regarding bills (SB 5304 and HB 1408) that would allow digital billboards on our state roadways went unanswered.

Yet Tacoma-based Gordon-Thomas-Honeywell (GTH) – lobbyists for advertising behemoth Clear Channel Outdoor (CCO) – apparently had much better luck. GTH, which has been paid more than $51,000 in 2012 and $19,300 to date for 2013 by CCO, managed to grab the attention of the bills’ sponsors when I could not.

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BILLBOARDS: Shame on the zoo, too

Click Network has recently been lambasted for its choice to use billboards, in spite of a (strangely non-enforced) law regarding non-conforming billboards within Tacoma city limits. Rightly so. Tacoma citizenry clearly wants the billboards to go.

So why are we angry at Click, but no one is complaining about the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium billboard at the intersection of 6th and Sprague?

Whether the billboard is conforming or not, the zoo is clearly ignoring overwhelming public opinion and adding to the Clear Channel coffers. Shame on the zoo, too.


TACOMA: Broadnax undercuts billboard battle

Re: “Costs spur Broadnax to stop billboard law” (TNT, 3-10).

New city manager T.C. Broadnax rides into town and shoots down something Tacomans have been working on for years?

As far as this taxpayer is concerned, he can get back on his horse and ride on back to Texas if he thinks he can just come in and undermine our battle against billboards in Tacoma. He was hired to work for us, not against us.


TACOMA: Council needs to stand by billboard law

Congratulations to the Tacoma City Council for listening to residents and passing a reasonable billboard ordinance which wisely bans digital billboards from blemishing Tacoma’s skyline and requires nonconforming static billboards to be removed by March 1, 2012.

During multiple public hearings, hundreds of Tacomans weighed in against digital billboards, 1,400 signed petitions against them, and six neighborhood councils and dozens of civic groups opposed them. Approximately 95 percent of Tacoma residents opposed digital billboards in the public process.

However, as the billboard issue moves through the court system, there will no doubt be temptations for the City Council to capitulate

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BILLBOARDS: Digital signs would destroy Tacoma’s ‘green’ efforts

Tacoma residents, civic groups and leaders as well as city’s newspapers have overwhelmingly opposed digital billboards from being forced into Tacoma as they are blightful and distracting to drivers and wisely banned in many cities such as Bellingham and Seattle.

Tacoma residents are continuously urged by the City of Tacoma to reduce energy use by replacing their lights with fluorescent bulbs, using less hot water, funding multimillion-dollar platinum-rated “green” buildings and to even having their garbage collected half as often. However, a different standard altogether appears to apply to billboard companies.

According to the U.S. Green Buildings Council, each digital

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BILLBOARDS: Digital signs provide no benefits

Most of us have a high tolerance for advertising because it typically subsidizes our costs to access and acquire information. Benefit accrues to consumers when we read a newspaper, a blog or watch a television program: We get content at a lower cost because of the advertising revenue which accrues to the publisher.

Publishers, like this newspaper, employ people and help pay the bills with that revenue. Consumers can choose what content to access and acquire.

No such benefits accrue to the consumers of outdoor advertising. As we travel city streets and sidewalks constructed with taxpayer dollars, billboards loom in

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