In light of a June 18 decision of the United States Supreme Court (Reed v. Town of Gilbert, 2015 WL 2373374), the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners has enacted a 30 day temporary moratorium prohibiting applications for and erection of signs effective as of 5 p.m. on Friday, June 26.
The moratorium means that, effective at 5 p.m. on Friday June 26, no further sign applications will be accepted by the Forsyth County Planning and Community Development Department until such time as the moratorium is lifted. The moratorium also bars the erection of signs for 30 days. The only exemptions to this prohibition are (1) signs that are erected pursuant to permits applied for prior to the moratorium becoming effective and (2) for expression signs. Expression signs are those not otherwise specifically defined and permitted in the Forsyth County Sign Ordinance, and which involve the expression of any idea. These will continue to be allowed without the necessity of obtaining a permit.
Forsyth County’s moratorium was enacted in order to allow the county’s legal counsel time to thoroughly review the county Sign Ordinance to ensure nothing within it is inconsistent with the Court’s holding in Reed v. Gilbert. At their regular meeting July 2, 2015 at 5 p.m., the Board of Commissioners plans to hear an update from legal counsel on this matter and could possibly take action regarding the moratorium.
Any sign application received in the Forsyth County Planning and Community Development Department by Friday, June 26 at 5 p.m. will be processed in the ordinary course.