Wednesday, June 29, 2022

NCDOT reminder: Campaign signs allowed in right-of-way through May 27

Political signs lined up on Eastwood Road in Wilmington. Eastwood Road is maintained by the NCDOT, therefore is an eligible right-of-way for politicians to erect campaign signage during election season. (Port City Daily/Johanna Ferebee)
Political signs line up on Eastwood Road in Wilmington. Eastwood Road is maintained by the NCDOT, therefore is an eligible right-of-way for politicians to erect campaign signage during election season. (Port City Daily/Johanna Ferebee)

RALEIGH — It’s that time of year. State law allows political signs on North Carolina roadways ahead of the primary election that will occur May 17. The North Carolina Department of Transportation will let signs stay until May 27, as long as they are properly placed.

Any signs that violate the general statute will and can be removed, NCDOT reminded in a press release this week. Additionally, NCDOT has the authority to take signs that interfere with driver safety or maintenance operations. As time permits, NCDOT workers are able to remove illegally placed signs that are not within the state right-of-way. Signs that are removed will be stored in local maintenance offices where they may be claimed.

Other rules:

  • Permission is needed by any property owner of a residence, business or religious institution that is in the front of the right of way where signs will be placed.
  • No sign is allowed to be placed in the right of way of a limited-access highway (i.e. an interstate).
  • Signs cannot be placed closer than three feet from the edge of the pavement of the road.
  • Signs cannot block visibility for motorists at an intersection.
  • Signs cannot exceed 42 inches above the edge of the pavement.
  • Signs cannot be larger than 864 square inches or block or replace another sign.

Those who illegally remove or vandalize a sign could face a Class 3 misdemeanor citation from law enforcement.

Campaign signs may remain in place for the first 10 days after the May 17 primary election. Signs in violation will be removed and disposed of by the NCDOT after that period.


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Alexandria Sands
Alexandria Sands is a journalist covering New Hanover County and education. Before Port City Daily, she reported for the award-winning State Port Pilot in Southport. She graduated from UNC Charlotte and wrote for several Charlotte publications while there. When not writing, Williams is most likely in the gym, reading or spending time with her Golden Pyrenees. Reach her at alexandria@localdailymedia.com or on Twitter @alexsands_

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