City Working to Reduce Illegal Signage and Blight

South San Francisco, CA   March 21, 2016


Illegal signage is a blight to our City

An ongoing problem has recently come before our South San Francisco Code Enforcement Department again with the Department taking strong actions to counter the illegal signage that blights our City. “Today on my inspection route I removed illegal signage that was posted on Linden, Airport and Maple, about 30 signs removed on this one day alone” Safety and Code Inspector Tom Carney said. “In addition, I have opened a code case and have made contact with those responsible for posting the illegal signage.”

Illegal signage tends to occur in waves when there are special events in San Francisco or at the Cow Palace. This visual blight reflects negatively on our neighborhoods and residents are encouraged to contact the City with the type of signage and location so they can follow up. The SSF Department of Public Works  has also joined forces with Code Enforcement and will be monitoring the City for illegal signage. Other Cities having similar problems have now partnered with cable and power companies to receive grants to help offset the cost of enforcing removal of illegal signage. Some have also partnered with non-profits which remove the signs freeing up staff time while earning funds from the grant monies which the City shares with the groups.

Other common code complaints include inoperable or dilapidated vehicles, if even in the homeowners driveway. SSF Municipal Code 8.489.110, 8.48.160 requires those vehicles to be stored out of street view. Many hobby cars are kept garaged leaving the driveway open for working vehicles. If you have a car that is not running and would like to donate it to a worthy cause, such as Make A Wish Car Donation CLICK HERE, Donate Cars to Veterans CLICK HERE, or Big Brother, Big Sister Program CLICK HERE. A simple google search ‘Donate cars to charity’ will bring many other options to consider.

While signage and inoperable vehicles bring down property values, so does overgrown and dead vegetation as we’ve seen since many have stopped yard care during the drought. In 2015 23% of all code complaints had to do with weed or vegetation issues on residential and or commercial properties. “In the first 9 months of last year we had over 210 cases were property owners had been notified to remove dead, decayed, diseased or hazardous trees.” Fire Chief Gerry Kolhmann advised. “Residents can contact our Public Works Department for alternative climate tolerant vegetation suggestions” he adds. Another resource is CalWater which offers information on drought tolerant landscapes, CLICK HERE for more information

It takes all of us in our City to showcase the best of what our City has to offer which includes inviting roadways and maintained neighborhoods. If you have questions or comments please contact the City at or call 650/839.6645.

If you would like to report an issue to Code Enforcement anonymously please call 650/829.6682. If reporting an abandoned car please also include the location, make, model, year of car, and length of time parked in the same spot. Cars are allowed to be parked unmoved for up to 72 hours on public streets.


Code cases have been established against those posting illegal signage which blights our City  Photo: Tom Carney SSF Safety & Code Inspector


As our downtown continues to revitalize we cannot tolerate blight on our streets Photo: Tom Carney SSF Safety & Code Inspector


If you see illegal signage please call 849.6645 to report to Code Enforcement. Together we can keep our City clean!Photo: Tom Carney SSF Safety & Code Inspector

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