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CITY OF GARLAND CODE OF ORDINANCES – CHAPTER 32 MODIFICATIONS TO

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					CITY OF GARLAND CODE OF ORDINANCES – CHAPTER 32 MODIFICATIONS TO PROPOSED REVISIONS PER COUNCIL DIRECTION WORK SESSION SUMMARY SHEET Number 27 – Removal of Holiday Decorations – Section 32.53 (D) & 32.03 (A)(5) COUNCIL CONCERNS: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Obtain a copy of Farmer’s Branch ordinance. Consider limiting this law to residential zoning only. Extend deadline for removal to 30 days and limit deployment to 45 days before. Define “holiday” and “holiday decorations.” Consider language about safety, maintenance, etc. Not enforceable.

DISCUSSION: At the January 3, 2005 City Council Work Session, staff members received significant input and guidance on whether and how to regulate citizens’ use of holiday lights and holiday decorations (such as yard art). Though most Council members had recommendations and opinions, there appeared to be only three distinct directions on this topic, as follows: 1. Regulate holiday lights and decorations by placing restrictions on how long before a holiday the materials could be placed, and by establishing a finite number of days the materials could be left after the holiday before the materials must be taken down (or face enforcement). 2. Stick to a mission of simply regulating for electrical (and therefore fire and shock prevention) safety. Write ordinance language that prohibits temporary seasonal wiring (that meets UL Standard 588 from being left outdoors over 90 total days. Specify that any outdoor wiring must meet the National Electrical Code (regardless whether the wiring was placed to recognize a particular holiday). 3. Do not pass an ordinance which regulates holiday lights or holiday decorations. ORIGINAL PROPOSAL: Section 32.03 (A)(5) Hazardous wiring. Any wiring except that which conformed with all applicable laws in effect at the time of installation and which has been maintained in operating condition. Outdoor, seasonal decorative lighting products and accessories shall not be in place for a period to exceed 90 days.

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Section 32.53 (D) It shall be an offense for an owner or occupant to possess holiday decorations such as lighting and theme related yard art, visible from a public place or public right-of-way for more than 15 days after the holiday related to the holiday decorations. MODIFIED VERSION: The following draft definitions and statute language are presented in support of Options 1 and 2 above: Definitions: a. Holiday shall mean a nationally or regionally-recognized calendar date associated with a specific event or season, including but not limited to New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King, Jr., Valentine’s Day, Easter, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. b. Holiday seasonal lighting shall mean electrical wiring with one or more bulbs or illuminated fixtures that is placed on a building or in a yard for a temporary period in observance of a holiday. c. Holiday decorations shall mean ornaments, figures, statues, signs, inflatable characters, and related products that are placed on a building or in a yard for a temporary period of time in observance of a holiday. d. Outdoor decorative lighting shall mean electrical wiring with one or more bulbs or illuminated fixtures that is placed on a building or in a yard for an indefinite period and not in association with a holiday.

Statute Language For Option 1 above: 1. It shall be an offense for a person to place holiday decorations or holiday seasonal lighting in a location that is visible from public property or from abutting private property more than 35 days prior to the holiday with which the holiday decorations or holiday seasonal lighting is associated. 2. It shall be an offense for a person to possess holiday decorations or holiday seasonal lighting in a location that is visible from public property or from abutting private property more than 30 days after the holiday with which the holiday decorations or holiday seasonal lighting is associated. 3. It shall be an offense for a person to possess outdoor decorative lighting: A. Which violates the currently adopted version of the National Electrical Code: or,

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B. Which is marked as conforming to UL Standard 588 and which has been outdoors for more than 90 days. Statute language for Option 2 above: The only definition needed is “Outdoor decorative lighting”. Use the statute language in section 3 above. COMMENTS: Staff was unaware of the zoning regulation from 1985 that requires the removal of holiday lights within 45 days. Additionally, Building Inspection under the electrical code has the authority to require the removal of any substandard wiring. Based on this information, current requirements could be used to provide Code Compliance with the authority to require the removal of lighting (theme related yard art could not be regulated under the National Electrical Code; however, staff is unaware of any year around displays of such items). STAFF RECOMMENDATION: If Council chooses to regulate holiday decorations, staff prefers the passage of Option 1 above.

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It shall be an offense for an owner or occupant to possess holiday decorations such as lighting and theme related yard art,visible from a public place or public right-of-way for more than 15 days after the holiday related to the holiday decorations.

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