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EDITORIAL – Candidates have to do better at keeping signs cleaned up

(Image: Mel Rothenburger.

An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

CIVIC ELECTION CANDIDATES have to do better at cleaning up their trashed and broken signs.

Signs get vandalized in every election at every level — civic, provincial or federal — so those who want our votes should be prepared.

It’s not always vandalism, either. Sometimes, it’s the weather. Other times, signs just aren’t installed properly and, literally, fall over.

So, planting the signs is only the first step. They have to be checked regularly to make sure they’re still standing, not becoming litter.

In several places in town, candidates’ signs are being yanked up and tossed on the ground.

Some candidates and their campaign teams are doing their jobs. Some aren’t. At one intersection, for example, signs were knocked over regardless of which candidate they belonged to. Circumstances indicate it wasn’t the wind that did it but, even if it was, they have to be cleaned up.

In short order, a lot were restored but, a few days later, quite a few weren’t, instead remaining on the ground like discarded garbage.

It’s just the sort of thing that makes people cheesed off about campaign signs.

I’ve often said I like election signs. They add some zing to the campaign, and they’re important in getting the message out to voters not only about who’s running, but that there is, yes, an election campaign going on and we should pay attention.

But in order to do their job, they have to be upright.

Tampering with or stealing election signs is illegal and subject to heavy penalties under the Criminal Code. A mischief conviction can bring a fine of up to $5,000 and jail time up to two years.

In practice, though, almost nobody is ever caught and charged, certainly not in Kamloops.

As long as sign vandals are on the loose, and signs get blown over or fall over on their own accord, candidates have to smarten up and keep their signs in good order.

I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.

Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC Today, publishes the ArmchairMayor.ca opinion website, and is a director on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District board. He can be reached at mrothenburger@armchairmayor.ca.

About Mel Rothenburger (9122 Articles)
ArmchairMayor.ca is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At ArmchairMayor.ca he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

2 Comments on EDITORIAL – Candidates have to do better at keeping signs cleaned up

  1. There has been a proliferation of signs in the area of Westsyde Road/Batchelor Heights intersection and along Westsyde Road up to the traffic lights at Westmount Drive. One large sign already was removed because it created a traffic hazard by blocking visibility.

    It’s almost as if the sign-makers have taken fertility drugs and this is the result.

    Of particular note is the difference in the level of information coming forth from candidates before an election compared to the level of information that can be obtained from them if they get elected to office.

    • “Of particular note is the difference in the level of information coming forth from candidates before an election compared to the level of information that can be obtained from them if they get elected to office.”
      You are right JN.
      That is the reason why there is absolutely no way I would vote for any of the incumbents. I will sure miss Mr. Walsh though.

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