The Truth About Billboards
Visual pollution. Sky Trash. Litter on a stick. The junk mail of the American highway.
Nothing destroys the distinctive character of our communities and the natural beauty of our countryside more rapidly than uncontrolled signs and billboards, which is why Scenic America works so hard to stop their proliferation and encourage their removal.
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When a billboard must be removed (or simply moved) for a highway project, its owner often seeks compensation far in excess of the worth of the billboard structure itself. Excess and unwarranted compensation for billboard condemnation is just one way that American taxpayers unduly subsidize the billboard industry.
More than 700 communities nationwide prohibit the contstruction of new billboards. Why? Because billboard control improves community character and quality of life -- both of which directly impact local economies. In fact, despite billboard industry claims to the contrary, communities and states that enact tough billboard controls enjoy strong ecnomic growth.
Appreciating natural and manmade beauty is the first step towards conserving our scenery and protecting our natural resources.
While the industry would like you to think billboards are harmless, their negative effects on our health and our safety have been well documented.
Billboards make a few people a lot of money. Unfortunately, however, they do serious economic harm to communities.
The billboard industry likes to proclaim its small, local nature. When a state or local government considers enacting tougher billboard controls, industry lawyers and lobbyists appear at hearings and speak long and loudly about how the government is threatening another small business with extinction. The reality, however, is quite different.