I respectfully disagree with your recommendation that North Riverside should obtain “revenue sharing” from the “flashing billboard sign at First Avenue and Cermak.” (“Signing off, The Landmark View, Jan. 16).

Your editorial identifies no reason why a municipality should be paid for allowing property owners to use land for legal, advertising purposes. You claim the sign in an “eyesore” and “garish.”

Assuming you are right, how is it a proper governmental function to assess a municipal charge because you decide something is an eyesore? Safety concerns (cars on Cermak or First Avenue) were never mentioned.

Your article never suggest that “revenue” be shared with the few homes who might actually be able to see the sign. You cite no municipal ordinance being violated and you don’t say the owners failed to pay their property taxes.

Your reasoning is summed-up as follows: The municipality should get in on the cash because the municipality can prevent proposed “changes” unless the municipality gets paid.

Proposing to tax or charge a fee for legal activity — just because North Riverside can delay the process unless the owner pays-up — is the kind of shake-down mentality that can drive small business from small towns. I do not believe that mentality is shared by a majority of neighborhood residents, irrespective of how they feel about that sign.

Mike Maher

2 replies on “No right to ‘shake down’ North Riverside sign owner”