Judge upholds Reno digital billboard ordinance

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RENO, Nev. (AP) - A state judge has upheld a city of Reno ordinance allowing billboard companies to remove four existing “static” billboards in exchange for installing a new digital billboard.

Washoe County District Judge Patrick Flanagan found the city’s ordinance struck a proper balance between protecting economic freedom and honoring the will of the voters to prevent scenic blight.

The Reno Gazette-Journal reports (http://on.rgj.com/1ogciCR ) that in his ruling handed down Thursday, Flanagan struck down two competing lawsuits.

One suit was filed by Saunders Outdoor Advertising, a small billboard company that claimed the ordinance violated its First Amendment rights and favored larger companies with more of an inventory of signs.

The other suit was filed by the group Scenic Nevada, which argued the ordinance violated the ban on new billboards within the city approved by voters in 2000.

Scenic Nevada is appealing Flanagan’s ruling to the Nevada Supreme Court.

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Information from: Reno Gazette-Journal, http://www.rgj.com

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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