'Going to Bleed Us to Death' Advertising By-Law Threatens Schools' Billboard Income

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BYLINE: AN201L LEWIS Metro Writer

THE City of Cape's new outdoor advertising by-law "is going to bleed us to death", say schools and community organisations reliant on the income generated by billboards.

And the outdoor signage industry has warned that the city council faces "lengthy litigation" if it doesn't reconsider its "subjective" and "discriminatory" by-law.

They were speaking at yesterday's public hearings on the controversial by-law, convened after members of the signage industry complained that the by-law was being considered without proper consultation.

Principals and school governing body representatives also implored the city council to reconsider the by-law's new restrictions and the impact it would have on schools' financial stability.

Meanwhile, Brent Dyssell of Independent Outdoor Media said the changes would lead to a loss in advertising revenue for private landowners of R30 million a year, with a capital value loss of R3 billion, equivalent to 70 percent of the cost of the Green Point stadium.

Principal of Garlandale High School Basil Snayer said an advertising billboard, up for more than a decade, had generated about R1m in income.

But, if the new by-law was passed, it was likely that this billboard would no longer comply and would have to be removed.

"This by-law is going to bleed us to death," Snayer said.

"The by-law is an attack on the children of the poor. We plead for sanity."

Another principal said school fees for each of its 480 families would have to increase by R100 annually if the school's billboard was removed. …