The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that sign regulations may not make restrictions based on their content or message (at least on non-commercial speech). The county’s existing zoning ordinance regulates and/or classifies certain sign types based, in whole or in part, on the message of the sign.
For example, the Fairfax County Zoning Ordinance (Par. 13.B) says:
Repeals and replaces Article 12, Signs, to include:
- a rewrite of all provisions in a content-neutral manner, to include new provisions for the regulation of minor (temporary) signs and the prohibition of off-site signs;
- reorganization of all provisions in a more user-friendly format to include graphics and a new section of defined terms;
- establishment of new regulations for electronic display signs; and
- establishment of more uniform regulation of signs in all zoning districts.
In addition, related sign provisions found throughout the Zoning Ordinance have been amended accordingly.