An amended ordinance giving Columbia County businesses more flexibility for temporary signs could be extended for another year.
County commissioners voted in July to allow new businesses to put out signs for grand opening and other special events for a week each year.
At the request of the county's development services division, Columbia County planning commissioners agreed Thursday to extend the ordinance until Jan. 31, 2012.
The revisions also permit temporary signs as large as 5 percent of a store's frontage. Previously, banners on a building were limited to 32 square feet.
Though the time limit for temporary sign and banner placement was reduced from 30 days to 15 days, business owners can put out signs four times each year for 15 days each time. The updated ordinance also includes off-premises signs for county events.
County planning manager Nayna Mistry said there hasn't been a rise in complaints since the temporary sign ordinance was revised.
The changes, which were set to expire this month, came about as a way to stimulate business in the county during tough economic conditions.
"It's been successful," Development Services Director Richard Harmon said. "Nobody's knocking our doors down wanting to put banners and streamers all over the place."
The county will see how effective the changed ordinance is during Masters Week and as more businesses locate in the area, Harmon said.
"That really will be our true test," he said.
In other planning and zoning business, the board tabled text amendments relating to a multifamily report until their Feb. 3 meeting in order to hold a work session and discuss the items.
County officials banned all multifamily housing rezonings in 2009 following debate over site plan revisions for Marshall Square, a mixed-use development on Evans Town Center Boulevard.
The moratorium was extended three times in 2010 for development and planning staff to review the study.
Planning commissioners also agreed to rezone a half-acre parcel on Shaw Street from townhouse-residential to general commercial to accommodate a parking lot for a future dance studio.
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