Political signs legal in city Friday

Political signs for the Sept.

12 Arizona primary election will be legal inside Kingman city limits beginning Friday.

Charlene Ware, Kingman city clerk, said the city ordinance that regulates political signs in the city is the same for all elections except for differences in fees.

Candidates in nonpartisan elections, such as the city council and mayoral contests, must pay a $50 deposit with a sign permit application.

For partisan elections the deposit is $100.

Deposits are returned if signs are removed 15 days after an election.

Candidates who lose in the Sept.

12 primary must remove signs within 48 hours.

Signs for candidates qualifying for the November general election can stay up because they will be within a new 60-day window.

"We usually have no difficulty getting the signs removed," Ware said.

"Candidates have generally been good to take signs down promptly."

Councilman Ray Lyons, during the July 1 council meeting, asked city staff to enforce the ordinance.

Some statewide Republican candidates had illegally installed signs that weekend.

City Manager Roger Swenson had staff check with the state Attorney General's Office and the Arizona League of Cities and Towns to see what legal issues were involved and how the Kingman ordinance fits with the other 83 cities in Arizona.

Ware checked with other city clerks and found a variety of ordinances with Kingman's 60-day rule about average.

Ware and her staff mailed letters to all 75 candidates running for offices in city election districts.

"We notified everyone of the Kingman ordinance and how to comply," she said.

"We expect all candidates will stay within the rules now that they have become aware of the Kingman ordinance."

For partisan elections, the $100 permit can be purchased either by a political party or by individual candidates.

If a party organization buys the permit, then the organization also would be responsible for sign removal.

Swenson said the city would remove any signs placed along city rights of way.

Candidates are required to get permission for putting signs on private property.

Enforcement is up to the property owner.

The city has no legal right to trespass on private property to remove signs.