Unfinished Business

SB 355: Bandit Sign Penalties

Illegally placed “bandit signs” clutter the public right of way, affecting the aesthetics of an area and diminish the quality of life for residents in Texas communities.

Currently, the maximum civil violation is a seen as a “cost of doing business” by these illegal bandit sign operators. In Houston, the City collects thousands of signs from the right of way each year.

From January 1, 2019- August 26, 2020 the Department of Neighborhoods and Public Works issued over 500 citations for bandit signs in the City of Houston.

The current low financial penalty of the citations dictated by state law does not deter most bandit sign offenders.

SB 355 by Sen. Borris Miles proposed to increase the maximum civil penalty of the placement of a sign on a right-of-way public road to $10,000 for each violation, as well as assign legal responsibility to persons who “use or benefit from the placement of the sign.”

These changes would have reduced the number of signs that pollute Texas communities.

Sen. Miles successfully passed SB 355 from the Senate. In the House, SB 355 cleared the House Committee on Transportation but did not make it on the calendar for the full House.