Village of Cooperstown, NY
Otsego County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Cooperstown 11-26-2012 by L.L. No. 8-2012. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Outdoor eating areas — See Ch. 178.
Vending, peddling and soliciting — See Ch. 277.
Zoning — See Ch. 300.
Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types

§ 227-1 Legislative purpose and intent.

A. 
Purpose. The purpose of this chapter is to establish rules for the use of outdoor signs and certain other signs that balance the communication needs of businesses, not-for-profit organizations and Village residents with the public's overall interest in maintaining the Village's historic character, aesthetic appeal and safe streets and sidewalks.
B. 
Intent.
(1) 
It is the intent of this chapter to authorize signs that:
(a) 
Protect and enhance the Village's historic structures, streetscapes, neighborhoods and scenic views, which represent distinctive elements of Cooperstown's historic, architectural and cultural heritage, the Village's sense of place, and its unique character;
(b) 
Are compatible in scale, color and design to the buildings to which they are attached or the property on which they are located and the neighborhood;
(c) 
Minimize distractions and the adverse effects of visual clutter;
(d) 
Promote the health, safety and general welfare of the Village;
(e) 
Are designed, constructed and displayed in a manner that is not hazardous to pedestrians, motorists or adjacent neighbors;
(f) 
Follow clear and reasonable standards for design and display, lighting and maintenance; and
(g) 
Assist and support Village merchants and others in their communications and advertising to their customers.
(2) 
It is the further intent of this chapter to permit nonconforming signs to continue until they are removed or discontinued but not to encourage their survival.

§ 227-2 Word usage; definitions.

A. 
Interpretation. The words and phrases contained in this chapter shall have the meanings set forth in this section. Words and phrases not defined in this section but defined in Chapter 300, Zoning, § 300-84, of the Village Code shall be given the meaning set forth in that chapter. All other words and phrases shall be given their common, ordinary meaning, except where the context clearly requires otherwise.
B. 
Definitions. As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated in this subsection:
ADJACENT PARCELS
Any parcel that abuts or is contiguous with the project site, including parcels across a street, rail line, a right-of-way or a river/stream.
[Added 4-22-2013 by L.L. No. 9-2013]
BANNER
A sign of lightweight fabric or similar material that is mounted to a pole, building or structure at one or more edges. National flags, state or municipal flags, or other official flags of any institution or not-for-profit organization, and residential or "OPEN" flags shall not be considered banners.
COMPATIBLE
A term used to describe signs, architectural styles, colors, materials, lighting and designs that can exist in close proximity without affecting each other detrimentally.
DEVICE
Any object used to communicate or enhance a visual message, for example, a lighting fixture or sign bracket (support).[1]
EVENT, SPECIAL
Any occasion approved by the Village of Cooperstown Board of Trustees, including, but not limited to, a fair, concert, festival, or ceremony for which special event vending provisions are in place.
[Amended 5-26-2015 by L.L. No. 10-2015]
ILLUMINATION, EXTERNAL
A condition in which the sign is lighted by reflective light from a source external to the sign itself.
ILLUMINATION, INTERNAL
A condition in which the lighting source is behind the letters being viewed or in which the letters or symbols are composed of light bulbs, LEDs or lighting tubes.
LIGHTING DEVICE
Any light, string or group of lights located or arranged so as to illuminate a sign or attract the attention of the public.
NOT-FOR-PROFIT ORGANIZATION
Any organization, including all 501(c)(3) organizations,[2] operated exclusively for charitable, educational, scientific, literary and/or religious purposes. The organization's assets must be permanently dedicated to these purposes, and earnings may not inure to any private shareholder, member or individual. In addition, it may not be an action organization, i.e., it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates. An individual does not qualify as an organization.
SIGN
Any display in public view used to draw attention to, identify, communicate, advertise or promote such things as organizations, businesses, products and services, events, candidates, personal opinions or municipal information.
SIGN, AWNING
A sign affixed to the front vertical surface of an awning; defined as a "wall sign."
SIGN, BACKLIGHTED
A lighted sign whose lighting source is behind the letters, and where the letters do not transmit any light, but all illumination comes around the dark letters by means of a translucent material.
SIGN, BUILDING DIRECTORY
Any sign consisting of an arrangement of individual placards identifying the names, offices or businesses located in a building.
SIGN, CANOPY
A sign affixed to the front vertical surface of a canopy; defined as a "wall sign."
SIGN, EXEMPT
A sign that does not require an application, approval, permit or fee, provided the sign complies with general condition(s), if imposed.
SIGN FACE
The visible surface of a sign, including the board to which the letters are attached but not any supporting posts, hangers, etc. For letters attached directly to a building surface, see § 227-5B(2).
SIGN, FLAG
Any flexible material, usually cloth, upon which a design, letters, symbols or unadorned material is displayed. Often mounted to a staff at two points, flag signs may be displayed hanging against the face of a building, suspended from an overhanging support, as a freestanding sign, or as a projecting sign.
SIGN, FREESTANDING
A sign placed on the ground or supported by one or more uprights or supports placed in or upon the ground, but not attached to a building or structure.
SIGN, HISTORIC WALL
A sign which has been in existence at its present location for 50 years or more and which constitutes a part of the historic heritage of the Village may be considered a historic wall sign only so long as its text, colors and graphics layout is not altered and it is preserved intact.
SIGN, MARQUEE
A sign attached in any manner to, or made part of, a marquee; defined as a "wall sign."
SIGN, MONUMENT
A freestanding sign usually composed of stone or stone products, placed directly on the ground and used for a variety of purposes, including subdivision identity, on-site directional, building identification, etc.
SIGN, NONCOMMERCIAL
A sign that does not advertise, promote or suggest a commercial establishment, product or service.
SIGN, PERMANENT
A sign located in a fixed location for longer than 30 days.
SIGN, PORTABLE
A sign which is not permanent and not affixed to a building, a structure or the ground, such as, but not limited to, a sign designed to be transported by means of wheels, with the exception of a sign attached to or painted on a vehicle and used in the normal day-to-day operation of said vehicle or in an authorized Village parade; a sign attached to or painted on a vehicle parked and visible from the public right-of-way; an A-frame or sandwich board sign; and balloons used as signs.
SIGN, PROHIBITED
A sign that is not permitted in the Village of Cooperstown.
SIGN, PROJECTING
A sign mounted perpendicular to the face of a building.
SIGN, RESTAURANT MENU
A sign, displayed as a wall or freestanding sign, upon which is posted the menu of a restaurant.
SIGN, STATIC LED
A sign composed of a number of LED lights mounted in a pattern so as to produce words or a design, but where the LED bulbs do not blink, change color or vary in intensity when in operation.
SIGN, SUBDIVISION
A sign used to identify the name of a residential subdivision.
SIGN, SUSPENDED
A sign suspended from the underside of a horizontal plane surface and supported by such surface; defined as a "wall sign."
SIGN, TEMPORARY
A sign usually displayed for 30 days or less. Due to the nature of the message, some types of temporary signs may exceed this time frame, for instance, point-of-view signs and political signs.
SIGN, WALL
A sign attached to the exterior wall of a structure in a manner such that the sign face and the wall of the building are parallel.
STREET LINE
The outer public right-of-way line of a public street or alley.
TOTAL BUILDING SIGNAGE PLAN
A master sign plan for all offices and businesses on the tax parcel, describing sign locations, colors and sign sizes for present and future occupants submitted by the owner of the tax parcel.
WALL SIGN AREA
Equals the total area of all types of wall signage displayed on a single facade.
[1]
Editor’s Note: The former definition of “event, community,” which immediately followed, was repealed 5-26-2015 by L.L. No. 10-2015.
[2]
Editor's Note: IRS tax-exempt organizations.
C. 
Zoning definitions: The following terms, as used in this chapter, are defined in § 300-84, Zoning (Definitions): arrangement; awning; canopy; compatibility; construction; eave; elements historic and/or architectural; erected; facade; harmony; home occupation; landscape; maintenance and repair; memorial; neighborhood; nonconforming structure; nonconforming use; parcel; person; property; reasonable; structure; subdivision; Village Board of Trustees; Village Planning Board; Village Zoning Enforcement Officer (ZEO); yard.

§ 227-3 Schedule of allowed signs.

A. 
Signs allowed with a permit  — Business/Commercial Districts.
(1) 
General. Each tax parcel is entitled to an arrangement of wall signs. In addition, each tax parcel is permitted one projecting sign for each functional entrance to a first-floor business or basement-level business on the parcel or one freestanding sign for the entire parcel, but not both projecting sign(s) and a freestanding sign.
(2) 
Wall signs: See Figure 1.[1]
(a) 
Front facade. For all buildings on a tax parcel:
[1] 
A wall sign area of 40 square feet is permitted for buildings having frontage of up to 80 feet.
[2] 
An additional one square foot of wall sign area is permitted per foot of building frontage over 80 feet up to a maximum of 80 square feet of wall sign area for buildings with frontage of 120 feet or more. (Example: For a one-hundred-foot frontage, 60 square feet of wall sign area is allowed.)
(b) 
Second (side) facade. For all buildings on a tax parcel located on the corner of two Village streets or on the corner of a Village street and a public alley or lane:
[1] 
A wall sign area of 20 square feet is permitted on the second facade for buildings with a side facade width of up to 80 feet.
[2] 
An additional 0.5 square foot of wall sign area is permitted per foot of side facade width over 80 feet up to a maximum of 40 square feet of wall sign area for buildings with a side facade width of 120 feet or more. (Example: For a one-hundred-foot side facade, 30 square feet of wall sign area is allowed.)
(c) 
Rear facade. For all buildings on a tax parcel having a rear facade entrance for customers, a total of 20 square feet of wall sign area is permitted.
(d) 
Business identity sign. Rear or side exits/entrances other than for customer use, including delivery doors, apartment doors and tourist accommodation entrances, located on sides adjacent to the front facade or on the rear facade, or both, may be identified by a business identity sign, subject to the following:
[1] 
Maximum area: two square feet per sign, per entrance.
[2] 
Signs shall provide the name of the business and the 911 street address.
[3] 
Advertising is not permitted.
(e) 
Building directory sign.
[1] 
Offices and businesses above or below the first floor may be identified by the use of a name placard located near the first-floor entrance.
[2] 
Each placard will be no greater than one square foot in area and similar in size, color and font to each other.
[3] 
All placards will be presented as a grouping, with the location of the grouping approved by the Planning Board.
[4] 
Upper-floor and basement-level office and business identification placards are not considered as part of the total wall signage area.
(f) 
Limits on the wall sign area established in Subsection A(2)(a), (b) and (c) above shall take into account the area of all wall signs on the tax parcel, including restaurant menu, awning/canopy, suspended and marquee signs. (See Figure 2, Suspended Signs.[2])
[2]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
(3) 
Projecting signs: See Figure 3.[3]
(a) 
One projecting sign is permitted for each functional entrance to a first-floor business or any business located below the first floor on tax parcels not having a freestanding sign.
(b) 
Maximum dimensions: area, 12 square feet; height, four feet; width, three feet.
(c) 
Maximum extension: no more than 39 inches from the facade unless hung from existing historical hardware.
(d) 
Building directory sign exception: A projecting sign used as a building directory sign for offices and businesses above the first floor shall have placards no larger than one square foot in area. [See Subsection A(2)(e) above for further restrictions and applications.]
[3]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
(4) 
Freestanding signs.
(a) 
One freestanding sign is permitted for each tax parcel, even in cases where there is more than one building on the tax parcel.
(b) 
Allowable sign area and height:
[1] 
Post-type signs: maximum area, 24 square feet; maximum height, 14 feet above the ground beneath the sign. (See Figure 4.[4])
[4]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
[2] 
Building directory signs: maximum height, seven feet; maximum width, 36 inches; placard size, six inches by 24 inches. (See Figure 5.[5])
[5]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
[3] 
Monument signs: maximum height, five feet including cornice; maximum area, 24 square feet. (See Figure 6.[6])
[6]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
(c) 
All parts of a freestanding sign must be four feet back from the curb where no sidewalk exists or one foot back from any existing sidewalk.
(5) 
Business placard holder.
(a) 
Businesses located on Pioneer, Chestnut and Main Street west of Chestnut Street and Doubleday Court may place one six-inch-by-twenty-four-inch two-sided placard on the Village-owned business placard holder at the appropriate location on Main or Chestnut Street.
(b) 
See § 227-6 (Specific Provisions) D. (2) for details.
(6) 
Sign illumination. Only one of the following options per tax parcel may be externally illuminated:
(a) 
All wall signs.
(b) 
All projecting signs.
(c) 
The one freestanding sign.
B. 
Signs allowed with a permit — residential districts.
(1) 
Signs for uses allowed by special permit.
(a) 
Offices and studios located in a residential district:
[1] 
Signs shall not exceed two square feet per office or studio.
[2] 
If more than one office or studio is located within the residential structure, each sign shall be similar in size, shape, color and font and shall be mounted or hung one below the other.
[3] 
The total area for all signs for the building shall be limited to four square feet.
(b) 
Home occupations within a residential structure or within a structure accessory to a residential structure are allowed one sign, not to exceed three square feet.
(c) 
Uses other than those listed in Subsection B(1)(a) and (b) above, e.g., tourist accommodations and accessory apartments, shall be allowed one sign, not to exceed six square feet.
(d) 
For tax parcels where the use is permitted by special permit under Chapter 300, Zoning, §§ 300-10 through 300-15, and where the principal use of the tax parcel is not residential in character:
[1] 
The provisions of this Sign Law, as stated in § 227-3A (Signs allowed with a permit — Business/Commercial Districts), may be used. Examples include, but are not limited to, hospitals, churches, schools, hotels, museums, etc.
[2] 
One externally lighted, changeable copy, freestanding sign, not to exceed 24 square feet in area, is allowed by permit.
(e) 
Signs identifying special permit uses in residential districts, as described in Subsection B(1)(a) through (d) above, shall be at least 10 feet from the street line. However, should the building facade be less than 10 feet from the street line, freestanding signs within the ten-foot setback or wall signs will be permitted.
(2) 
Subdivision identification sign.
(a) 
Each entrance of a subdivision may have one freestanding sign for identification purposes.
(b) 
Maximum area, 24 square feet; maximum height, five feet above the ground beneath the sign.
(c) 
The sign(s) shall not be placed on public property.
C. 
Table 1: Signs allowed with a permit, a summary of § 227-3A and B.
KEY:
Y
=
Allowed with sign permit
Y(sp)
=
Allowed with sign permit, upon issuance of special use permit by ZBA, Trustees/Planning Board
N
=
Not permitted
Signs Allowed With Permit
Zoning District
Sign Type
Residential
Business
Commercial
Chapter Section Reference
Total building sign plan
Optional
Optional
§ 227-4B; § 227-5
Wall
Y(sp)
Y
Y
§ 227-3A(2); § 227-5
Projecting
Y(sp)
Y
Y
§ 227-3A(3); § 227-5
Freestanding (post)
Y(sp)
Y
Y
§ 227-3A(4); § 227-5
Freestanding (monument)
Y
Y
Y
§ 227-3A(4); § 227-5
Building directory (freestanding, projected, wall)
Y(sp)
Y
Y
§ 227-3A(2)(e), (3)(c), (d), (4); B(1)
Business placard holder
N
Y
Y
Awning, canopy, marquee
N
Y
Y
Restaurant menu
Y(sp)
Y
Y
Suspended (wall or projected)
Y(sp)
Y
Y
Changeable copy
Y(sp)
Y
Y
Commercial planned development park
N
Y(sp)
Y(sp)
§ 227-3A(4); site development plan objects
Sign illumination
Y(sp)
Y
Y
§ 227-3A(6); § 227-5
Office/studio in residential structure
Y(sp)
Y
Y
§ 227-3B(1); § 227-5
Tourist accommodations
Y(sp)
Y(sp)
Y(sp)
§ 227-3B(1); § 227-5
Home occupation
Y(sp)
N
Y(sp)
§ 227-3B(1); § 227-5
Accessory apartment
Y(sp)
N
Y(sp)
§ 227-3B(1); § 227-5
Use in residential district not residential in character
Y(sp)
N
N
§ 227-3B(1); § 227-5
Subdivision identity
Y
N
N
§ 227-3B(2); § 227-5

§ 227-4 Obtaining sign permit.

A. 
General. No sign, except for certain exempt and temporary signs as provided for by this chapter, shall be erected, moved, altered, added to or structurally changed without a permit issued by the Zoning Enforcement Officer (ZEO). A conforming or permitted sign to be repainted or repaired to the exact duplication of the original sign shall not require a permit. The ZEO shall issue a permit only if it complies with the following provisions and has been approved by the Village Planning Board.
B. 
Total building signage plan.
(1) 
The owner of a tax parcel containing multiple businesses on the same tax parcel may submit a total building signage plan for all businesses on the tax parcel by following the permit procedure described in Subsection C following.
(2) 
The plan will describe the location, size and sign type of each sign for each business located within the structure(s) on the tax parcel and provide corresponding elevation drawings or detailed photos of all sides of the structure(s) on which there is signage.
(3) 
Once the Planning Board reviews and approves the plan, future occupants need only to follow the approved plan for their individual business locations, including background sign color(s), letter color(s) and font sizes.
(4) 
If a sign is not part of a previously approved total building signage plan, the applicant for the sign permit shall comply with the procedure described in Subsection C below.
C. 
Permit procedure.
(1) 
The applicant shall submit an application for a sign permit, along with the required fee, to the ZEO. If the applicant is not the owner of the tax parcel where the sign is to be located, the owner or owner's agent shall cosign the application.
(2) 
The application shall be accompanied by two copies of the proposed sign plan and shall include:
(a) 
A colored scaled drawing, showing the dimensions of the proposed sign, its shape, coloring, type of lettering (font type), sign material, any architectural details attached to the sign board (frame, etc.), and if a projecting or freestanding sign, the height of the lowest portion of the sign above grade.
(b) 
Recent color photograph(s) of the property where the sign is to be located that clearly show to scale where the sign is to be placed and other existing signage that will remain on the property and on adjacent buildings.
(c) 
Details of any illuminating fixtures or devices. See § 227-5H, Sign illumination standards.
(d) 
A plan for anchoring the sign securely in place.
(e) 
Any other information as may lawfully be required by the ZEO to enforce this chapter.
(3) 
The ZEO shall verify that the application and the plan are complete and, within 21 days of receiving a completed application, submit the application to the Planning Board for review.
(4) 
The Planning Board shall be required to accept from the ZEO only those applications received five or more business days prior to any scheduled meeting. The Board shall review the application for a permit by considering the following:
(a) 
Conformity with the provisions of § 227-1, Legislative purpose and intent.
(b) 
Compliance with other relevant provisions of this chapter, Chapter 300, Zoning, and other Village regulations.
(5) 
The Planning Board shall report its decision to the applicant as soon as practicable.
(a) 
If the application is approved, the Planning Board shall authorize the ZEO to issue a permit. After marking both copies of the plans "approved," the ZEO shall return one copy to the applicant.
(b) 
If the application is rejected, it shall be so noted on the application, and the Board shall report the reason for such a decision to the applicant.
[1] 
The Board may include, as part of its report, suggested changes that could lead to permit approval. Such suggested changes shall be noted on the one copy of the original plans returned to the applicant.
[2] 
One copy of the rejected plans shall be placed in the Village zoning file along with the Planning Board's suggested changes.

§ 227-5 Design and construction standards.

A. 
Design standards, general. The following guidelines are provided to encourage and direct applicants to use compatible graphic designs, materials, colors, illumination devices and placement schemes when developing their signage plans. In general, sign design shall be consistent with the purpose and intent of this chapter and the criteria established by § 300-26B and E (criteria for approval for a certificate of appropriateness).
(1) 
Signs should be designed to be compatible with their surroundings and should be appropriate to the architectural character of the buildings on which they are located.
(2) 
Sign panels and graphics should relate to and not cover architectural features or details of the building and should be in proportion to them.
(3) 
Signs should be appropriate to the types of activities they represent.
(4) 
Sign layout should be orderly and graphics concise; for clarity, no more than two fonts should be used on any one sign or group of signs displaying the same information.
(5) 
The number of colors used should be the minimum consistent with the design.
(6) 
Illumination should be appropriate to the character of the sign and its surroundings and shall be in accordance with the illumination standards (see Subsection H below).
(7) 
The texture and composition of sign materials should be compatible with the building materials used on the premises.
(8) 
Groups of related signs or multiple signs located on the same premises should express uniformity and create a sense of harmonious appearance.
B. 
Computation of sign area: See Figure 8.[1]
(1) 
The area of a sign shall be computed as the area of the smallest rectangle that can be placed around the sign face. The area shall be measured from the outer dimension of the frame, trim or molding by which the sign is enclosed, where they exist, or from the outer edge of the signboard where they do not exist.
(2) 
When a sign consists of individual letters, symbols or characters attached directly to the building face, its area shall be computed as the area of the smallest rectangle that encloses all of the letters, symbols or characters, collectively.
(3) 
When a sign consists of two or more faces, as with some freestanding and projecting signs, only one face of the sign shall be used in computing the sign area if the faces are parallel to and within 12 inches of each other. Otherwise, all faces of the sign shall be used to compute the sign area.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
C. 
Wall sign standards.
(1) 
All wall signs shall be located on the front facade of the building except as permitted by this chapter.
(2) 
No wall sign shall extend beyond the outer edge of any wall or the building to which it is attached.
(3) 
No wall sign shall extend above the eaves of the building to which it is attached.
(4) 
No wall sign of a first-floor business, office, etc., shall extend above the level of the floor of the second story of the building upon which the sign is attached.
(5) 
A wall sign shall be parallel to the wall to which it is attached and shall not project more than 12 inches therefrom.
(6) 
Illumination of wall signs shall be in accordance with § 227-5A(6) and Subsection H, Sign illumination standards, of this section.
D. 
Freestanding sign standards.
(1) 
The total height of the sign shall be measured from the average ground elevation under the sign (when not mounded) to the top portion of the sign frame. (See Figure 10.[2])
[2]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
(2) 
The slope of the topmost portion of a freestanding sign (pediment) shall not exceed a 6:12 pitch.
(3) 
The bottom edge of a post-type freestanding sign shall be at least eight feet above the ground beneath the sign face when the sign face is above a walkway, right-of-way, street, alley or an area where persons congregate.
(4) 
No part of any freestanding sign shall be greater than four feet above the average ground level in a front or side yard in any residential district.
(5) 
No part of any freestanding sign shall be above three feet in height when placed in the twenty-five-foot triangle formed by the junction of two streets. See Sketch A in § 300-28B (zoning - yard requirements).
(6) 
Illumination of freestanding signs in the Business and Commercial Districts shall be in accordance with § 227-5A(6) and Subsection H, Sign illumination standards.
E. 
Projecting, marquee, awning and canopy sign standards:
(1) 
The bottom edge of a projecting, marquee, awning or canopy sign shall be at least eight feet above the ground elevation beneath the sign, awning or canopy, if the space beneath the sign is used as a walkway, driveway, alley or area where persons congregate or where it would impair visibility.
(2) 
A marquee sign may include lettering on three sides of the marquee.
(3) 
A canopy or awning may contain lettering, numerals or symbols on the front vertical surface, provided the height of the lettering, etc., covers no more than 3/4 of the vertical surface, with the lettering centered evenly between the top and bottom edges of the vertical face. The top and bottom 1/8 of the vertical surface will remain free of lettering, etc. (See Figure 7.[3])
[3]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
(4) 
Canopy signs and awning signs are not permitted above the first floor of a structure.
(5) 
The illumination of projecting and marquee signs shall be in accordance with § 227-5A(6) and Subsection H, Sign illumination standards.
F. 
Building directory sign standards.
(1) 
All building directory signs, be they wall, projecting or freestanding signs (post type), shall have placards no greater than one square foot in area. Post-type, freestanding building directory signs shall have a placard size of six inches by 24 inches.
(2) 
All building placards shall be similar in size, compatible in color and font with each other, and presented as a grouping.
G. 
Sign maintenance standards (for permitted or exempt signs).
(1) 
The owner of a sign and the owner of the premises (tax parcel) on which such sign is located shall be jointly and individually liable to maintain such sign, including its illumination sources, in a neat and orderly condition and in good working order at all times and to prevent the development of any rust, corrosion, rotting or other deterioration in a sign's physical appearance that may affect its safety.
(2) 
Unsafe, unsightly, damaged or deteriorated signs or signs in danger of falling shall be put in order or removed upon written notice by the ZEO. Immediate compliance is expected for the repair or removal of unsafe signs. If compliance is not achieved within the time period specified by such notice, the sign shall be repaired or removed by the Village and the costs assessed to the property owner.
(3) 
Temporary signs that are unsightly, damaged or deteriorated, or in danger of falling or becoming dislodged and/or windblown shall be put in order or removed upon written notice by the ZEO. Immediate compliance is expected for the repair or removal of unsafe temporary signs. If compliance is not achieved, the sign shall be removed by the Village.
H. 
Sign illumination standards.
(1) 
The area, brilliance, intensity, location and type of illumination shall be the minimum necessary for the intended purpose of such illumination, consistent with public safety, the welfare of adjacent properties, and the safety of pedestrian and vehicular traffic.
(2) 
All sources of illumination shall be shielded or directed in such a manner that the direct rays therefrom are not cast upon any property other than the parcel on which such illumination is situated.
(3) 
All sign lighting devices shall emit only light of constant intensity.
(4) 
All bare incandescent and fluorescent light sources and immediately adjacent reflecting surfaces shall be shielded from public view.
(5) 
The period of time of illumination shall be the minimum necessary for the intended purpose of such illumination, consistent with public safety and welfare. Illuminated signs must be turned off at the close of business each day. All illuminated signs extinguished as above shall remain extinguished until the next regular posted opening hour of business in connection with which such sign is maintained.
(6) 
Exterior signs shall be illuminated with white light from a source external to the sign.
(7) 
Neon and other gas-type illumination and static LED illumination shall be permitted behind a window area as an internally lighted window sign, provided that such lighting is transmitted through the letters or symbols of the sign, and further provided that such letters or symbols are designed for and integrated into the face of the sign prior to its erection and are not glued, pinned or otherwise affixed to the face of the sign.
(8) 
Lighted sign boxes faced with clear glass may contain a light source inside of the box, provided that the light source is mounted forward of the message board and the light source is screened by a translucent shield.
(9) 
The Planning Board may retain the services of a lighting consultant in accordance with Board of Trustees policy. However, the Planning Board will make the final decision regarding all external illumination questions (i.e., intensity, glare, etc.).

§ 227-6 Specific provisions.

A. 
Exempt signs. The following signs do not require an application, approval, permits or fees, provided such signs comply with the general conditions of this section, as stated below, and other conditions specifically imposed by these regulations.
(1) 
Historic markers, tablets, statues, memorial signs and plaques, not exceeding six square feet.
(2) 
Existing historic wall signs. Includes signs identifying proprietors or advertising commodities or services no longer connected with the premises on which such signs are located.
(a) 
Historic wall signs may be maintained or restored to their original appearance.
(b) 
Any historic wall sign may be covered with another approved sign so long as no part of the historic sign is disturbed by such installation.
(3) 
Historic wall signs no longer in existence.
(a) 
With the specific approval of the Planning Board, such signs may be reconstructed in connection with the restoration of historic structures within the Village.
(b) 
Reconstructed signs will be considered historic signs for the purposes of this chapter.
(4) 
Building identification signs incorporated within the facade of a structure. Names of buildings and dates of erection when cut into any masonry surface or when constructed of bronze, stainless steel, or similar material not exceeding four square feet in area.
(a) 
Shall not exceed two feet in height nor more than 5% of the facade of the building side upon which it is constructed.
(b) 
Shall not identify a tenant or occupant of the structure.
(c) 
Shall be allowed only on one facade having street frontage.
(d) 
No illumination is permitted.
(5) 
House and building numbers.
(a) 
For structures in residential districts, a sign identifying only the street name, number and/or nameplate that identifies residents, not exceeding one square foot when mounted on the house, apartment or mailbox.
(b) 
For structures in nonresidential districts, a sign identifying only the street name and number, not exceeding two square feet when mounted on the building or not exceeding one square foot when mounted on a sign or mailbox.
(6) 
Flags, etc.
(a) 
National flags and flags bearing the insignia of any political, charitable, educational, professional, religious, philanthropic or similar not-for-profit organization, except when displayed in connection with a commercial promotion.
[1] 
Each flag not to exceed 35 square feet.
[2] 
Limit of three per tax parcel.
(b) 
Other decorative flags bearing no advertising in residential districts.
[1] 
Each flag shall not exceed 15 square feet.
[2] 
Limit of two per tax parcel.
(c) 
U.S. flag(s) less than one square foot in area.
(d) 
Red, white and blue bunting.
(7) 
On-premises directional signs for the convenience of the general public, identifying public parking areas, fire zones, entrances and exits, and similar signs.
(a) 
Shall not exceed 1.5 square feet.
(b) 
Limited to three in number.
(c) 
Limited to a maximum height of six feet above the finished grade.
(8) 
Nonilluminated warning, caution, private drive, posted or no-trespassing signs, not to exceed 1.5 square feet per sign face.
(9) 
OPEN and CLOSED signs.
(a) 
In the Business and Commercial Districts or in residential districts in which a business is operating as a preexisting, nonconforming use:
[1] 
Signs, not internally lit, may be displayed in windows, beneath freestanding signs, as projecting signs or as wall signs.
[a] 
One is exempt per functional entrance.
[b] 
Signs shall not exceed two square feet in area.
[c] 
The exemption for OPEN and CLOSED signs in windows is subject to the overall limitation on window signage in Subsection A(19)(c)[1] and [2] below.
[2] 
OPEN signs, internally lit, may be displayed in windows only.
[a] 
One is exempt per functional entrance, subject to the overall limitation on internally illuminated signs described in Subsection A(19)(c) below.
[b] 
Signs shall not exceed two square feet in area.
(b) 
In residential districts:
[1] 
One may be displayed as a freestanding, wall, window or projecting sign.
[2] 
OPEN and CLOSED signs may not exceed one square foot in area unless allowed due to a preexisting, nonconforming use. See Subsection A(9)(a) above.
[3] 
Internally illuminated OPEN signs are not permitted unless allowed due to a preexisting, nonconforming use. See Subsection A(9)(a) above.
(10) 
Municipal directional signs, legal notices and identification/informational signs erected by a government body.
(11) 
Analog clocks which do not exceed seven feet in diameter.
(12) 
Removable lettering on theater marquees, restaurant menu boards, and freestanding signs of not-for-profits, e.g., churches.
(13) 
Gasoline pump island signage:
(a) 
Gasoline price signs: maximum size, three square feet per sign; maximum number, two per island.
(b) 
Other signs not readable from adjacent streets.
(14) 
Vending machine signs located on private property.
(15) 
Public telephone identification signs.
(16) 
Barber poles: one traditional revolving sign per shop, illuminated or otherwise.
(17) 
Holiday and other seasonal decorations, including temporary lighting devices, flower boxes, lawn and garden decorations.
(18) 
Temporary signs associated with Vending Law uses as set forth in Local Law No. 5-2015.[1]
[Amended 5-26-2015 by L.L. No. 10-2015]
(a) 
Signs are allowed without a permit, provided such temporary signage complies with the following:
[1] 
Design standards in Local Law No. 5-2015.
[2] 
Section 227-6B(1), Temporary signs allowed without a permit, General requirements, Subsection B(1)(c) through (g).
[3] 
Any sign provisions in lease or rental contracts for public property.
(b) 
Vending signs may be enhanced by decorations and windblown devices otherwise prohibited under § 227-6C(3), Prohibited signs, Restrictions to limit visual distractions.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 276, Vending.
(19) 
Window signs (exterior or interior), window display areas, internally illuminated (neon) window signs as described below.
(a) 
In addition to the wall sign area allowed by permit under § 227-3A(2), signs on storefront windows and glass doors in the Business and Commercial Districts are exempt from any application, approval or permit requirements.
A guideline of 25% is suggested as the maximum storefront window area covered by both permanent (greater than 30 days) and temporary (less than 30 days) signs applied to the exterior and interior glass surface of first-floor storefront windows, and first-floor storefront windows facing a second (side) street.
(b) 
Window display areas (to the rear of the storefront glass) are exempt from any sign regulation.
(c) 
Internally illuminated, neon, neon-like, static LED signs.
[1] 
Signs within five feet of the window glass.
[a] 
Two signs are exempt as long as they meet all the conditions stated in Subsection A(19)(d)[4] below and comply with the purpose and intent of the chapter.
[b] 
The limitation of two signs includes any OPEN signs.
[2] 
Signs greater than five feet from the interior storefront glass are exempt.
(d) 
Conditions:
[1] 
Signage placed on the exterior surface of the storefront window glass shall be permanent and not subject to peeling and tearing. (Tempera paints are allowed during special event periods.)
[Amended 5-26-2015 by L.L. No. 10-2015]
[2] 
Signage affixed to the interior surface of the storefront window glass may be either permanent or temporary.
[3] 
The use of holiday or special event decorations shall not be considered part of the twenty-five-percent guideline, and any such decorations shall be removed following the specific event for which they were displayed.
[Amended 5-26-2015 by L.L. No. 10-2015]
[4] 
Interior, internally illuminated signs:
[a] 
The total maximum area exempted for any two signs is eight square feet.
[b] 
OPEN signs shall not exceed two square feet in area per sign.
[c] 
No sign shall face a residential property within 50 feet.
[d] 
Signs may be illuminated during business hours only and shall comply with § 227-5H, Sign illumination standards.
B. 
Temporary signs allowed without a permit.
(1) 
General requirements.
(a) 
Signs do not require a permit, provided they comply with all conditions as listed in Subsection B(2), (3) and (4) below.
(b) 
Should a sign be needed that exceeds the conditions as listed in Subsection B(2) and (3) following, or if the temporary sign need is not provided for in § 227-6B, approval by the Planning Board is required.
(c) 
Signs are not permitted on public property, except as provided for in Subsection B(2)(a)[6], (c) and (d).
(d) 
Signs are not permitted in the median between the sidewalk and the curb, nor attached to trees, bushes, support wires, street/municipal signs or utility poles located within the median.
(e) 
Signs are not permitted as wall signs on buildings, except as provided for in the substitution clause of this chapter.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: See § 227-6D(3)(b).
(f) 
Signs are to be removed at the conclusion of the event for which the signs were erected, or following the resolution of the "personal" view issue, as determined by the erector of the sign.
(g) 
No sign shall be independently illuminated.
(h) 
On parcels in residential districts where the use is preexisting, nonconforming or by special permit, a temporary sign may display a commercial message for a business located on the property. (Businesses doing work on properties in any district may display a temporary business identification sign while work is in progress.)
(2) 
All districts.
(a) 
Freestanding signs.
[1] 
Examples of noncommercial topics (events, issues, point of view), often the subject of temporary signs, might include, but are not limited to, the following:
[a] 
Political candidates and parties.
[b] 
Real estate sales and rentals.
[c] 
Personal point of view.
[d] 
Yard sale.
[e] 
Ballot proposition.
[f] 
Not-for-profit event.
[g] 
Personal celebration.
[h] 
Encouragement.
[2] 
For each parcel, individuals may display as many temporary signs as they wish, provided that no two signs, when viewed from a single point, are identical; that is, look exactly the same in message, design and color. Each sign may be single- or double-sided and have a maximum area of six square feet per side and may not exceed 48 inches from the ground.
[3] 
Signs shall be securely anchored on private property and located in a manner that will not interfere or block the vision of pedestrians and motorists as they use the public sidewalks and streets.
[4] 
Where the property does not provide a location for a double-sided sign perpendicular to the street, it may be placed parallel to a building's facade or fence with the total visible area of the signage not to exceed six square feet for each event or issue.
[5] 
A sign may be used to describe the location and date of a noncommercial event at a location other than where the sign is erected, provided that the parcel owner has granted permission to the person erecting the temporary sign.
[6] 
With the permission of the Board of Trustees, not-for-profit organizations may use select public sites to display temporary signs as described in Subsection B(2)(a)[2] and [4] above.
(b) 
Banners: Not-for-profit organizations may erect banners attached to the ground or to a building.
[1] 
Banners not attached to a building:
[a] 
Organizations shall be permitted to display a temporary banner(s) with wind flaps or a suitable substitute having a total maximum area of 30 square feet on their property for the purpose of announcing a special event or to express a point of view.
[b] 
The banner shall be securely anchored in a safe manner and location that will not interfere with the vision of those using the sidewalks and streets adjacent to the property.
[c] 
The banner shall be removed at the conclusion of the special event for which the banner was erected.
[2] 
Banners attached to buildings:
[a] 
Organizations shall be permitted to hang a banner(s) with wind flaps or a suitable substitute material having a total maximum area of 60 square feet.
[b] 
The banner shall be positioned no less than eight feet above the surface of the ground if the area under the banner is used as a walkway, driveway or a place where people assemble.
[c] 
Building banners may remain in place until the conclusion of the event for which they were erected, at which time they will be promptly removed.
(c) 
Signs displayed on public/private property for vending purposes. The Village Board of Trustees allows temporary vending signs to be displayed on public/private property in specific situations, such as special events, not-for-profit fairs, and the outdoor display of merchandise, etc. For further details, refer to Local Law No. 5-2015.[3]
[Amended 5-26-2015 by L.L. No. 10-2015]
[3]
Editor’s Note: See Ch. 276, Vending.
(d) 
Signs displayed on public property.
[1] 
Directional signs. The Board of Trustees may permit limited temporary directional signs within the public right-of-way by not-for-profit organizations for community activities and major attractions in or near the Village of Cooperstown with the approval of the ZEO in consultation with the Chief of Police and the Director of Public Works.
[2] 
Signs as part of a lease:
[a] 
The Board of Trustees may also permit the use of public property, including the installation of temporary exterior signage, through a contract or lease with the Village of Cooperstown.
[b] 
The location of such public sites include, but are not limited to, the Village trolleys, Doubleday Field and parking lot, and all public parks and playgrounds.
[c] 
Individuals and organizations interested in leasing public space for the purpose of conducting an event, including the display of signage, should contact the Village Clerk.
[3] 
Main Street banner.
[a] 
One banner displayed over Main Street may be permitted by the Board of Trustees for a period of on to two weeks, upon proof of insurance and contingent upon available display dates.
[b] 
The banner is only available to not-for-profit organizations whose activities center in and whose headquarters are located in the Village of Cooperstown or the Towns of Otsego, Middlefield, Springfield or Hartwick. Only not-for-profit sponsors may be listed on the banner.
[c] 
The organization sponsoring the banner is responsible for any charges associated with erecting and removing the banner.
[d] 
Application for the display date and instructions are available from the Village Clerk.
(3) 
Buildings under new construction and/or renovation.
(a) 
Under construction.
[1] 
Temporary construction sign: one six-square-foot double-sided sign, not to exceed 48 inches in total height.
[2] 
Shall contain the name of the contractor and an emergency telephone number and shall be removed upon the completion of work or within one year, whichever comes first.
(b) 
Under renovation and in commercial use.
[1] 
One wall sign or one freestanding sign, but not both, not to exceed 12 square feet in area, is allowed for each building undergoing facade renovation or while waiting for an approved sign to be constructed, not to exceed 60 days, with an additional 30 days to be extended by the ZEO, if needed.
[2] 
Such signage will identify the name of the business on the premises whose permanent sign has been displaced.
(4) 
Temporary signs for nonconforming properties and special use permit properties.
(a) 
Nonconforming properties:
[1] 
All nonconforming uses will comply with the temporary sign requirements associated with the present (nonconforming) use of the property. The restriction of additional signage will have no effect on temporary signs allowed.
[2] 
Noncomplying uses will comply with the temporary sign requirements associated with the zoning district in which the parcel is located.
(b) 
Special permit uses. All uses granted by a special permit under the Zoning Law will comply with the temporary sign requirements of the zoning district in which the special permit was granted, unless otherwise provided for in the special permit.
C. 
Prohibited signs. Any sign not permitted by this chapter shall be deemed prohibited. The list of prohibited practices in the following paragraphs is not an exhaustive list, but has been included to illustrate, by example, some of the aspects of signage that are considered undesirable and incompatible, and are thus prohibited.
(1) 
Restrictions to uphold public safety.
(a) 
No sign shall be constructed so as to be confused with any authorized traffic sign or device.
(b) 
No sign shall be located so as to restrict the vision of pedestrians or motorists.
(2) 
Restrictions to limit excessive lighting.
(a) 
No exterior sign shall be internally illuminated.
(b) 
No interior backlighted sign shall be placed within five feet of the window glass.
(c) 
No sign shall be illuminated by or consist of any moving, flashing, intermittent or rotating lights, nor be indirectly illuminated by a lighting device that causes glaring or nondiffuse beams of light to be cast upon any public street, sidewalk or adjacent premises.
(d) 
No light source shall be a searchlight or be a device producing laser beams.
(3) 
Restrictions to limit visual distractions.
(a) 
No sign shall have a message or any part of its face change automatically.
(b) 
In all districts, no sign shall include elements, such as banners, pennants, ribbons, streamers, balloons, spinners or other windblown devices, that flutter or revolve, except as provided for in § 227-6A(18). (See Figure 11.[4])
[4]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
(c) 
No sign shall in its construction employ any mirror or mirror-like surface, nor be painted with any day-glow or fluorescent pigment.
(4) 
Restrictions to limit sign clutter and preserve neighborhoods.
(a) 
No sign shall be placed or located upon public property or the property of public utilities unless so authorized by other provisions in this chapter.
(b) 
No sign shall be painted or drawn upon any trees, shrubs or natural landforms.
(c) 
No sign shall be allowed upon any roof surface with the exception of mansard roofs.
(d) 
No sign shall be portable except for temporary A-frame signs on residential parcels. (See Figure 12.[5])
[5]
Editor's Note: See Graphic Sketches of Common Sign Types, which is attached to this chapter.
(e) 
No sign shall identify or advertise any business, goods or services that are located off the premises.
D. 
Supplementary provisions.
(1) 
Nonconforming signs.
(a) 
This chapter recognizes the present existence of signs, including previously approved signs, which do not conform to the provisions of this chapter.
[1] 
It is the intent of this chapter that a nonconforming sign shall not be replaced with another nonconforming sign, not enlarged upon, nor used as grounds for adding to or otherwise amending the sign.
[2] 
Existing signs which become nonconforming as a result of the revision of this chapter shall be allowed until a replacement is necessary, or there is a change in the proprietor, whichever comes first.
[3] 
In the case of noncompliance, the ZEO shall take appropriate action in accordance with § 227-7, Enforcement and remedies.
(b) 
A nonconforming sign may be temporarily removed for painting or other maintenance purposes, if restored within three months. Such restoration shall not be permitted if the period of time is exceeded.
[1] 
The wording, color, lettering style, or any other design element shall not be changed or altered in any way.
[2] 
In the case of internally or externally illuminated signs, the amount of illumination shall not be increased.
[3] 
A permit shall be required before undertaking repairs to any nonconforming sign.
(c) 
For properties classed as nonconformities, as defined in Chapter 300, Zoning, the appropriate provisions of this chapter, as stated for residential, business or commercial districts, shall be used. The Planning Board shall determine which zoning district provisions are appropriate, as governed by the classification of such properties in Chapter 300, Zoning.
(d) 
Any changes in or additions to signs on nonconforming properties may be approved by the Planning Board only if in its opinion any existing degree of nonconformity will be appreciably lessened.
(2) 
Business placard holders. In order to announce the nature and location of certain businesses in the Business and Commercial Districts that are adjacent to, or near to, but not upon that section of Main Street between Chestnut and Fair Streets, a permanent business placard shall be provided for each business. Each permanent business placard location shall consist of holders or frames and the individual business placards identifying each business.
(a) 
The Village of Cooperstown is the owner of the business placard holders and is responsible for their construction, maintenance and installation.
(b) 
The business whose name is displayed on the placard will be responsible for its placard and shall replace or repair any damage thereto or defacement thereof, within seven days or less, or suffer removal of the placard.
(c) 
The Village of Cooperstown shall establish a fee schedule whereby the businesses represented by placards on the placard holders shall share equitably in the cost of manufacture, maintenance and installation of the placard holders through the payment of an annual fee. The period covered by the fee will commence on May 1 of each year and end on April 30 of the following year. Partial fees shall not be accepted, and refunds shall not be issued.
(d) 
The placard holders are to be affixed at the following locations:
[1] 
The intersection of Hoffman Lane and Main Street for the businesses located on Hoffman Lane and Stagecoach Lane;
[2] 
The northeast corner of the intersection of Main and Pioneer Streets for the businesses located on Pioneer Street, north of Main Street;
[3] 
The southeast corner of the intersection of Main and Pioneer Streets for the businesses located on the east side of Pioneer Street, south of Main Street;
[4] 
The southwest corner of the intersection of Main and Pioneer Streets for the businesses located on the west side of Pioneer Street, south of Main Street and for those businesses located on Pioneer Alley that wish to have their plaques attached at that location rather than Subsection D(2)(d)[5] following;
[5] 
The intersection of Pioneer Alley and Main Street for those businesses on Pioneer Alley that wish to have their plaques attached at that location rather than Subsection D(2)(d)[4] above;
[6] 
The Main Street entrance to Doubleday Parking Lot for the businesses bordering upon the parking lot and the businesses in Doubleday Court;
[7] 
The southwest corner of the intersection of Main and Chestnut Streets for the businesses located on Main Street west of Chestnut Street and for the businesses on Railroad Avenue;
[8] 
The northeast corner of the intersection of Chestnut Street and Doubleday Court for the businesses on Chestnut Street south of Main Street and businesses located in Doubleday Court; and
[9] 
The southeast corner of Main and Chestnut Streets for businesses on Chestnut Street north and south of Main Street.
(e) 
The precise location of each sign holder shall be determined by the Board of Trustees.
(f) 
Each of the above-indicated businesses may attach identical placards, one on each side of the appropriate placard holder. Each placard will have a standard size of six feet by 24 inches. Each placard shall be constructed of a standard material and be painted a common neutral background color as determined by the Village Planning Board. Businesses shall make their applications to the Village Planning Board for approval of lettering, color and text. Applicants should contact the ZEO concerning the process for manufacturing their placard. Businesses which elect to combine their advertising into a single placard may do so as long as the combined total height limitation is not exceeded. The ZEO will provide an applicant a default color and font, if needed.
(g) 
The placard of the business located the greatest distance from Main Street will be placed at the top of the file of placards on the placard holder, and each of the successive placards will be placed below the business whose distance from Main Street is greater than its own.
(h) 
Permanent business placards may not interfere with the window displays of other businesses or create hazards to pedestrian or automotive traffic.
(i) 
No device may be attached to business placard holders, including but not limited to additional signs, menus, leaflets, leaflet holders, balloons or windblown devices.
(3) 
Other regulations.
(a) 
Any sign advertising a business no longer in operation or a product no longer sold by the business shall be removed by the business or tax parcel owner, unless the sign is a historic wall sign.
(b) 
Substitution clause: Noncommercial signs are allowed in all districts and may be substituted for any sign expressly allowed under this chapter.
E. 
Table 2, Signs allowed without a permit, a summary of § 227-6A and B.
[Amended 5-26-2015 by L.L. No. 10-2015]
KEY:
E
=
Sign type is exempt and does not require an application, approval, permit or fee, provided the sign complies with the referenced law section
S
=
Sign types exempt, provided use is by special permit
N
=
Not permitted
Signs Allowed Without Permit
Zoning District
Sign Type
Residential
Business
Commercial
Chapter Section Reference
Historic markers/plaques
E
E
E
Historic: wall
E
E
E
Building identifiers (name/date of erection)
E
E
E
House/building number
E
E
E
Flags
National, varying; USA bunting
E
E
E
Decorative
E
E
E
Directional
On-premises
E
E
E
Public
E
E
E
Warning/cautionary
E
E
E
OPEN, illuminated
E
E
E
OPEN/CLOSED, nonilluminated
E
E
E
Clock, analog
E
E
E
Lettering (removable/changeable)
E
E
E
Gasoline (price/grade)
N
E
E
Vending machine on private property
S
E
E
Public telephone
E
E
E
Barber pole
S
E
E
Decorations/signs
Seasonal/holiday
E
E
E
Special events by Board of Trustees
E
E
E
Part of vending permit, design standards
E
E
E
Signs
E
E
E
Windblown devices
E
E
E
Lawn objects/art, flower boxes
E
E
E
Window signs
Attached to exterior/interior glass
N
E
E
Interior display area
N
E
E
Neon/tube/static LED (within five feet of window glass)
S
E
S
Neon/tube/static LED (greater than 5 feet from window glass)
N
E
S
Temporary freestanding (private property)
Event/political/ personal views
E
E
E
Construction
E
E
E
Business/commercial facade
N
E
E
Temporary freestanding (public property)
Event, directional
E
E
E
Event notice
E
E
E
As part of lease
E
E
E
Banners by not-for-profit organizations
Attached to building
E
E
E
Not attached to building
E
E
E
Displayed over Main Street
N
E
N

§ 227-7 Enforcement and remedies.

A. 
Administration and enforcement:
(1) 
A ZEO, designated by the Village Board of Trustees and serving at the pleasure of the Board, shall administer and enforce this chapter. The ZEO may be provided with the assistance of such other persons as the Board may direct.
(2) 
If the ZEO finds that any of the provisions of this chapter are being violated, he/she shall notify in writing the person responsible for such violation, indicating the nature of such violation and stating the action necessary to correct it. Subsequent notification need not be sent for the same type of violation.
(3) 
The ZEO is hereby empowered to order the removal or discontinuance of illegal signs or of additions, alterations or structural changes thereto or to take any other action authorized by said Village Board to ensure compliance with or to prevent violations of its provisions. Any violation that affects public property and/or occurs on public property (e.g., telephone poles, trees, Village sign posts) is subject to immediate action.
(4) 
Any person, whether agent, architect, builder, contractor, owner, tenant or otherwise, who violates any provision of this chapter following notification from the ZEO, shall be subject to a penalty of no less than $100 and not exceeding $1,000 and/or 50 hours of community service for each violation. Each day that any violation continues shall be a separate offense. Questions of enforcement of this chapter shall be resolved by the Village Board of Trustees.
(5) 
Any officer of the Village of Cooperstown police force is empowered to enforce this chapter.
B. 
Interpretation of the Sign Law: The Planning Board shall resolve all questions of interpretation of this chapter.
C. 
Fees.
(1) 
Application for erecting, altering or moving a sign as well as the filing of a request for a variance by the Planning Board shall be accompanied by the fee as established in the Schedule of Fees and adopted by the Board of Trustees. Resubmission of an application adopting modifications suggested by the Planning Board shall not require a fee.
(2) 
No permit shall be issued or a variance granted without the payment of a fee in accordance with the provision of this section.
D. 
Variances.
(1) 
A variance is a relaxation of the terms of the chapter where such a variance will not be contrary to the public interest and where, owing to conditions peculiar to the property and not the result of the actions of the applicant, literal enforcement of the law would result in unnecessary and undue financial hardship.
(2) 
The Planning Board may, after public notice and public hearing, vary or modify the application of this chapter in harmony with its legislative purpose and intent as stated in § 227-1 and may impose reasonable conditions on the applicant as a requirement for granting the variance.
[Amended 4-22-2013 by L.L. No. 9-2013]
E. 
Newspaper notification is required 14 days prior to a public hearing, and a minimum of eight adjacent neighbor notifications must be made by mail 14 days prior to a public hearing, with allowance for additional mail notifications at the discretion of the board conducting the public hearing. Special permit/municipal notification shall contact all property owners within 400 feet/500 feet.
[Added 4-22-2013 by L.L. No. 9-2013]

§ 227-8 Conflict and application.

A. 
Conflict with other laws. In the interpretation and application of this chapter, the provisions thereof shall be held to be the minimum requirements and are not intended to repeal, modify or impair any existing provisions of law relative to the use of signs. This chapter shall apply only where it imposes greater restrictions on the use of signs than is required by existing provisions of the law. In case of conflict with existing or future provisions of the law, the most restrictive provisions of the statutes applicable shall apply.
B. 
Application and construction. This chapter is applicable within the Village of Cooperstown and shall be construed as an exercise of the powers of such Village to regulate, control and restrict the use of buildings, structures and land for outdoor advertising purposes, displays, signs and other advertising media in order to promote the health, safety, morals and general welfare of the community, including the protection and preservation of the property of the Village and its inhabitants and of peace and good order, for the benefit of trade and all matters related thereto.