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Sign of election times in Santa Clarita

Mystery placards placed illegally in public right-of-way

Posted: March 10, 2014 7:17 p.m.
Updated: March 10, 2014 7:17 p.m.

An example of Ferdman's actual election signs, left, and the mystery sign, right.

A Signal reader’s complaint about apparent Santa Clarita City Council campaign signs placed in the Newhall roundabout produced a bit of a mystery Monday: the candidate whose name is on the offending placards says he knows nothing about them.

The signs placed in the Newhall roundabout and captured on camera March 6 by Santa Clarita resident Dennis Fuerst read: “Who’s Alan Ferdman?”

Ferdman, who is indeed running for City Council, says he doesn’t know anything about the signs or the person who placed them in the roundabout in violation of a city ordinance.

His signs all urge viewers to “Elect Alan Ferdman, City Council,” Ferdman noted in a phone interview Monday — not to question his identity.

He said he has no idea where the “Who’s Alan Ferdman?” signs came from or who put them up. But he says he’s seen one, so he knows they’re real.

“I’m waiting for the next shoe to drop,” he added, saying he doesn’t know if the person asking the question will pose an answer — and what that answer might be. “You could take it positively or negatively,” he said.

The mystery isn’t the first in Santa Clarita City Council campaign history that involves candidate signs. Previous heated city election campaigns have included accusations of sign thefts or defacement traded by candidates, along with the usual complaints over illegal location placement or illegally oversized signs.

The city passed an ordinance regulating sign size. But the problem with sign placement on the public right-of-way presents itself every election, Santa Clarita spokeswoman Gail Morgan said.

“If there are campaign signs that are in the public right-of-way, they will be removed,” Morgan said.

After code enforcement officers pick up offending signs, the city contacts the candidate whose name is on the placard and tells him or her about the confiscated property and where it can be collected, she said.

After the election, unclaimed signs go in the trash.

The “Who’s Alan Ferdman?” signs that were in the roundabout were gone Monday, and Morgan said they would go into the pile with other illegally placed campaign signs.

Anything with a candidate’s name on it triggers a call to that individual to pick up his or her signs, she said, so Ferdman stands to come into possession of the identity-querying placards.

The City Council election is April 8.





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