Council to review sign policy after Bilpin business outrage

The sign that copped business owner Sean Prendergast a $6000 fine from Council.
The sign that copped business owner Sean Prendergast a $6000 fine from Council.

COUNCILLORS unanimously passed a notice of motion at the last Council meeting to urgently review their sign policy after a blitz at Bilpin by compliance officers caused outrage by businesses.

Speaking at the meeting, Bilpin Cider owner Sean Prendergast, who after two visits was fined $6000 for a new sign he thought was compliant, said “over the past six weeks I have been harassed by Council enforcement officers relating to signage outside my business”. He said he felt he had been targeted, and that “enforcement across the area is anything but consistent”.

Danielle Wheeler agreed with the inconsistency criticism. “The visual pollution in McGraths Hill is staggering,” she said. “Surely we can get a policy that is clear, consistent and enforced consistently.”

Councillor Nathan Zamprogno, who put up the motion, said “to see we are being so punitive towards businesses which need adequate signage to attract business is disappointing”.

Council’s resolution to review the policy included that it undertake education of businesses in preference to fines and that enforcement action be undertaken “with the greatest care”.