Petaluma council deadlocks on allowing shopping center signs

An effort to rewrite part of Petaluma's sign code failed late Monday night as the City Council stalemated in a 3-3 tie.

Regency Partners, developer of the Target-based East Washington Place shopping center, appealed a Planning Commission denial of its request to install freeway-facing signs on the rear of the project's buildings, which will back up to Highway 101.

The City Council, in a 3-2 vote in May, directed city staffers to rewrite the ordinance allowing for such signs as long as they were tasteful. The staff rewrote the ordinance, but the Planning Commission rejected it 6-0 with several objections.

On Monday night, Councilman Gabe Kearney, who sits on the planning board as a liaison and voted against the issue previously, said he still couldn't support changing that part of the ordinance. He said he would be more comfortable reworking the entire city sign code.

He, Teresa Barrett and Tiffany Renee voted to reject the changes, while Mike Healy, Chris Albertson and Mike Harris voted for them.

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