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City Corner column: $10 permit required for garage sales

By By Jennifer Sourdellia
Nov. 25, 2012 at 5:25 a.m.


I'm having a garage sale. Where can I place garage sale signs?

On any given Friday or Saturday, you will find numerous garage sales scattered across the city of Victoria.

When having a garage sale, there are some city regulations to keep in mind.

If you are having a garage sale, you must apply for a permit from the city secretary's office. Garage sale permits cost $10. You can either obtain a permit at the city secretary's office at city hall or purchase it online by visiting victoriatx.org and clicking on the city secretary link. Then, you can print it out and display it prominently during the garage sale. Please also keep in mind you can only have a garage sale every six months.

(The Victoria Advocate's classified advertising staff also can help explain these regulations. Call 361-574-1234 to place a garage sale ad with the newspaper.)

A good majority of people advertise their garage sale by posting temporary signs on street corners at the entrances to neighborhoods, at traffic intersections and on utility poles. The city has a sign ordinance that prohibits garage sale signs or portable signs being placed within any street right of way. A right of way is defined as the entire width between property lines of any road, street, way, alley, bridge or other similar thoroughfare publicly maintained when any part thereof is open to the public for vehicular traffic.

Sandwich board, A-frame, portable/bandit signs, sidewalk or curb signs are not allowed. Signs that are blocking a public sidewalk are also prohibited, as well as signs posted on trees, rocks, bridges or utility poles or signs utilizing such objects for all or part of their support.

Garage sale signs are only allowed to be placed on the residents' private property (for example, a portable/A-frame sign can be placed on private property in a front yard, posted on a garage door, etc.).

On the weekends, the city's code enforcement officers have been conducting sweeps to enforce the sign code and remove signs that violate the city code, including garage sale signs.

Code enforcement officers confiscate an average of 80-85 signs each weekend. The confiscated signs are recycled. Those signs that are not recyclable are properly disposed.

Violators receive warnings and can be fined up to $500.

The city secretary's staff informs residents about the restrictions on garage sale signs when a garage sale permit is purchased. The information is also printed on the permit.

If you have questions about the sign ordinance, please contact the code enforcement office at 361-485-3330 or the city secretary's office at 361-485-3040.

Can you tell me what's planned for this year's Christmas on the Square? When and where will the event be held?

It will begin to look and feel a lot like Christmas at DeLeon Plaza when the Parks and Recreation staff brings you "Christmas on the Square" from 6-9 p.m. Friday.

The plaza will transform into a Winter Wonderland for the entire family to enjoy. Visit Santa Claus and his elves in the gazebo. See some of Santa's reindeer up close. Listen to Mrs. Claus and the elves read Christmas stories at the Victoria Public Library Story Corner.

Experience the Texas Zoo's petting zoo, ride ponies and enjoy games and inflatables - all while listening to Christmas music. You will also be able to ride the holiday hayride through downtown and visit our downtown businesses for holiday goodies.

Do you have a question about the city of Victoria? Please submit your questions and comments about any city department to Jennifer Sourdellia in the Communications/Public Information Office by emailing jsourdellia@victoriatx.org or mail to P.O. Box 1758, Victoria, TX 77902.

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