Local businesses throughout Newport were visited by City Of Newport’s Zoning Enforcement office this week and handed a letter that warns and reminds businesses what the rules are regarding signs in the public right of way.

“Our office has received numerous complaints regarding the placement of business signs on the sidewalk in the public right of way,”  the letter to property owners that is dated June 24th and signed by Zoning Officer Guy Weston states.

The Codified Ordinance of the City of Newport regarding signs in the public right of the way states;

Section 17.76.120 (H). – Signs prohibited in all areas.

Signs on public property or public rights-of-way, other than signs erected by the city or traffic control devices erected by the state, unless specifically authorized by the city council.

“These signs had been allowed by the city administration during the hectic days of the Broadway construction project to assist your customers in locating you. Since the project is nearing its completion, we will again begin to enforce the ordinance above. We will begin active enforcement the week after the 4th of July weekend,” Weston writes in the letter.

Businesses along Broadway, Upper Thames Street and Lower Thames Street have confirmed that they have recently received a letter and visit from Zoning enforcement.

“For those who utilize these signs in conjunction with a permitted sidewalk cafe, such signs will be allowed so long as the sign is kept within the boundaries of the seating area. It is of the utmost importance that all pedestrians have the full and unobstructed use of the sidewalk available to them,” the letter states.

Weston invites business owners and/or property owners that have questions to contact him at gweston@cityofnewport.com or 401-845-5452.