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(Campaign) signs of the times disappearing

DOBSON — The political signs recently infiltrating local roadways promoting candidates for this week’s primary election now are disappearing from the landscape as quickly and quietly as they came.

This includes ones placed at locations serving as voting precincts on Tuesday, which have been proactively and unceremoniously uprooted in the wake of the last ballots being cast.

“Our take-down staff removed signs today from Election Day precincts that were located on church and school property,” Surry County Director of Elections Michella Huff advised Wednesday night — about 24 hours after the totals for various races were reported.

Those items haven’t wound up in some political memorabilia graveyard, but are being stored temporarily in Dobson, Huff added.

“We have placed all signs collected behind the Board of Elections office against the outside of our building, where they will remain for 10 days, ” Huff explained in reference to the board’s headquarters at 915 E. Atkins St. in the Surry County Service Center.

Candidates and/or supporters can retrieve their respective signs until 5 p.m. next Friday, according to the elections official.

Any campaign signs or banners remaining after that date are to be thrown away.

Law requires removal

That 10-day window observed by the Board of Elections also will be accompanied by signs being removed elsewhere in the county — if candidates/supporters obey the law.

The display period for campaign signs officially ends on the 10th day after the primary, which is May 27.

Signs still in the right of way after that time will be in violation of state law, and the N.C. Department of Transportation is authorized to remove and dispose of them, based on a set of guidelines issued last month by the agency. Those still in place then are considered abandoned.

Yet the upcoming deadline doesn’t mean the end of campaign signs this year, which are expected to make a reappearance ahead of the general election in November — involving cases where candidacies remain viable after the primary — and effectively recycled.



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