DIGITAL BILLBOARDS: Moratorium Approved

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The Des Moines City Council could put a stop to a plan to add more digital billboards in the city.

Council members say there are a growing number of complaints about the large billboards especially when they’re placed near residential areas.

Neighborhood leaders say the signs in business districts are so large and so bright, they dominate the view from backyards and windows.

The council agreed Monday to schedule a hearing for next month to discuss a moratorium on adding more signs.

The decision comes as a Minnesota based company is trying to add two such signs on the north-side.

The company says advertisers and most cities like the signs.

“We work with the communities with any sort of public service announcement, Amber alerts and anything of that nature which most communities find to be very helpful,” Ray Kosis of Fairway Outdoor Advertising told councilors.

But council members say its neighbors they are concerned with not just businesses.

“I see the horrible clutter that we’ve got out there,” council member Bill Gray said. “And what bothers me about this is those signs are beating down on our neighbors. The people have to sit there and see that.”

The council wants to stop any new signs from going up until late June. During that time they say they will conduct a study on the effects of the signs.