Billboard Measure Advances In Frankfort

From Kentucky Public Radio’s Tony McVeigh

Over the objections of environmentalists, a Senate committee in Frankfort has approved legislation sought by the billboard industry in Kentucky.

For years, the billboard industry has been trying convince lawmakers to let them come onto public rights-of-way to cut down trees and vegetation blocking private signs. The measure usually gets out of the Senate, but dies in the House. It’s back again this year, over the objections of environmentalists like Keith Eiken of Scenic Kentucky.

“Billboards are products of a private industry and their owners must accept the market risks that affect the owners’ decisions on the placement of their product. The courts have ruled that these boards do not have any inherit right to be seen.”

But, with both Democrats and Republicans supporting it, the bill won unanimous approval in the Senate Transportation Committee and now awaits a floor vote.