Cambridge Route 50 Businesses Fighting Fines - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Cambridge Route 50 Businesses Fighting Fines

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CAMBRIDGE, Md. - In many towns across Delmarva, signs dominate the sides of major highways.  Route 50 in Cambridge is no exception, but a number of businesses have received letters from the city's planning and zoning department asking to remove some of their signs.

Cambridge public works director Odie Wheeler says it's all about making the city more attractive.

"I think our goal would be to make it more attractive when you come into town. That it doesn't look like sign after sign after sign." said Wheeler.

Some say the various demands from the city are coming far too often. One business owner tells WBOC he was asked to move a clothing donation bin behind his restaurant instead of right along Route 50. That's only one of the issues he's facing.

The owner, who asked not to be identified, has also purchased the old Spicer Brothers Seafood Restaurant, and the 35 foot tall sign that comes with it. He tells WBOC that he has been asked to take the sign down because according to zoning laws in Cambridge, a business must remove their signs if they have been closed for more than 30 days.  The owner's lawyer, Michael Dodd, says the planning and zoning department is doing more harm than good.

"We believe that their selective enforcement of these sign ordinances does nothing but drain the small business owner. It does nothing but damage their bottom line and their morale," said Dodd.

Wheeler though says most businesses on Route 50 have complied with the notices, as well as new businesses opening up on the highway.  He says they are continuing to work with business owners who have complaints about the ordinances.

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