Political candidates, volunteers reminded about state sign laws

With political campaign season under way, the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, or ADOT&PF, has issued a reminder about the laws regarding political advertising.

In 1998, Alaskans overwhelmingly voted to keep the state free from all signs or forms of outdoor advertising. This includes political advertising.

Below are two sections of Alaska Statutes pertaining to sign posting and/or advertising in the right of way of Alaska’s highways:

• Campaign signs placed within the state’s road and highway rights of way are unauthorized encroachments under AS 19.25.200-19.25.250 and may be removed by state ADOT&PF crews without notification. Vehicles parked in rights of way that are used to display political advertisements are also prohibited and subject to removal.

• AS 19.25.105(a) states, “Outdoor advertising may not be erected or maintained within 660 feet of the nearest edge of the right-of-way. …” If a sign is on commercial property but within 660 feet of the state’s right-of-way, ADOT&PF personnel may send a 30-day written notice requesting removal of the sign. This notice will be sent to the property owner and the candidate.

“Campaign advertising is an important effort and expensive investment for all candidates. Many candidates and their volunteers may not realize the limitations of advertising in the rights of way or the exact locations of the rights-of-way,” according to a press release from ADOT&PF.

To help make this clearer, the state provides a list of regional roads and highways affected by right of way laws.

For questions about specific roads and highways on the Kenai Peninsula, contact the Central Region, Right of Way, Anchorage Office, at 907-269-0700.