Sign spat: Luna Park Café proprietor fighting $500 citation for nearby A-frame

(One month after Luna Park Café was cited for an A-frame sign here, apartment complexes from Columbia City and The Triangle were back)

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

You might have noticed fewer advertising A-frame signs on streetcorners in recent weeks.

For a while earlier this year, it seemed every intersection in West Seattle had a cluster on weekends – mostly advertising the bigger new apartment complexes around town, even a building in Columbia City, six miles away.

Then the city cracked down and issued warnings – with one local entrepreneur as a sort of bycatch.

John Bennett, owner of Luna Park Café, got a $500 citation for an A-frame sign his restaurant had long placed at Harbor/Avalon/Spokane (same location as the top photo), half a block from his café, meant to catch the attention of people coming off the bridge to head toward the West Seattle waterfront.

He’s fighting the citation and has an appeal hearing this week.

Bennett didn’t seek out attention for this challenge. We happened to notice the appeal hearing, originally scheduled for early May, while making a routine check of the city Hearing Examiner‘s website, an occasional source of stories. But he wasn’t hesitant to talk about it when we contacted him.

First, we should point out that the city says A-frame signs are only supposed to be allowed immediately adjacent to the business they promote. That’s what the citation, issued March 29th, noted. (Here’s the full sign code online.)

Bennett’s appeal, filed less than two weeks later, has just one sentence: “My sign has been there for 27 years.”

In a phone interview, he told us, “I understand what the city’s saying … (but) if you’re a small business, you should be able to have your signboards, within reason, in the same block.” A multimillion-dollar apartment development that’s nowhere nearby – whether in The Junction, a mile or so west, or that one in Columbia City – not so much. So that’s why the original warning didn’t make sense, he said. “(The developers) are putting up these A-boards and putting them all over the city … it got out of control and there were a dozen A-boards for every apartment building. So the city sent out [warning] notices … I just assumed they were talking about these apartment A-boards and didn’t do anything.”

Eventually, that resulted in the $500 citation – which he calls “ridiculous. Another way the city of Seattle is trying to discourage small business. Why do I feel like the city is my enemy? The city should be encouraging small business.” (Two weeks after Bennett’s $500 citation was issued, the mayor declared that “Small businesses are essential to the economy of our city,” while announcing an advisory committee about “commercial affordability.”)

The A-board rules aren’t the only thing he says are running contrary to that stated goal; he mentions the trials and tribulations of a tenant of his elsewhere in West Seattle who he says has been dealing with a variety of demands while trying to put in outdoor seating, while another arm of city government is trying to encourage converting parking spaces into “streateries.” “Does one hand know what the other hand is doing?”

In the case of sign enforcement, SDOT’s Angela Steel told us when we inquired, one hand is the city, the other is that of its citizens. A-frame signs, she said, are investigated “on a complaint basis … We want to be sure mobility is maintained on sidewalks, and (businesses) should be having their signs in front of the actual business.”

Citations, she said, are not issued at the start of the process – “we get a complaint, we investigate, we send a warning to the business, and after two warnings, we cite.”

How many citations? we asked. According to Steel, 185 warnings for A-frame signs were issued last year, with 23 citations resulting. As of late April, she said, the city had issued 47 warnings, and 9 citations.

One, to John Bennett’s Luna Park Café. The appeal hearing is scheduled for next Thursday (May 19th) at 1:30 pm at the Hearing Examiner’s chambers in the city Municipal Tower downtown.

Meantime, A-frames for apartments continue turning up away from their sites:


Those were in front of the 35th/Avalon 7-11 one day in early May.

74 Replies to "Sign spat: Luna Park Café proprietor fighting $500 citation for nearby A-frame"

  • Atomicoven May 15, 2016 (7:36 pm)

    Ok, I get it; the A frames can get out of hand sometimes and I understand there is a point when the need to be removed. Does anyone else agree? There are 3 homeless RV on Harbor. Anyone agree the city should do something about that?

  • steve May 15, 2016 (7:38 pm)

    I’m glad to see those signs gone. They are a nuisance, a distraction, and they look tacky too.  If you don’t own the property, get your signs outta there.  Would you mind if I put my “fresh fish” sign in front of your establishments? 

    Let me guess….

  • Chemist May 15, 2016 (7:59 pm)

    The (formerly) DPD does goes out of their way to not issue fines and resolve complaints without ill will. Sidewalk encroachment by trees/vegetation is one that I’ve received notices for at this house and it’s always been resolved without a fine.

    The city has a lot of rules about advertising and signage being attached to your property because of previous abuses (things like whole sides of buildings being covered with a sign for a cell phone company and so they open a “pop up” stand in that building that sells phones).

    Lastly, streeteries need a bit more oversight too. I used to walk by the one that, between patio umbrellas and dog bowls outside the fence, was not maintaining the required clearance of the sidewalk… right in front of greenlake it was “single file” because of the sidewalk eating area.

  • cjboffoli May 15, 2016 (8:15 pm)

    That Columbia City apartment complex went down California Ave. SW and plastered each and every telephone pole with two of their posters.  None of the posters are displaying a date, as is required by law.  And some of them and layered on top of older posters, also prohibited.  It’s obnoxious.

  • flimflam May 15, 2016 (8:19 pm)

    ppht. so this is a finable offense but any sort of camping or illegally parked vans, RV’s etc is ok?

    • AMD May 15, 2016 (9:04 pm)

      No, there are parking regulations as well that affect the RVs you’re talking about.  Like the signs, they get warnings before there’s a fine.  The problem isn’t that there aren’t fines for RV campers, the problem is that fines don’t fix the underlying problem (which also seems to draw a parallel to the sign issue since the signs are still everywhere, even with threat of a fine).

  • KBear May 15, 2016 (8:34 pm)

    $500 seems like a bargain price for 27 years of encroachment on public right of way. 

  • Overthere May 15, 2016 (8:43 pm)

    This just a guy trying to draw more attention to his business. The City has much “bigger fish to fry” but won’t. DPD or whatever they call themselves needs to wake up and do things that matter. I understand not wanting five of these signs on a corner, but please he is drawing attention to a business 250 feet away. I would say they need to change the ordinance to allow these types of signs within a reasonable distance, however we all know that process will not go the way any reasonable person wants. If they want to enforce these types of issues why not go after realtors and their open house signs. I am not say that is a good idea either, however be reasonable.

  • AIDM May 15, 2016 (8:49 pm)

    In looking at the city website for the last 15 minutes, I determined 1) those signs under the bridge are definitely illegal, 2) A great many signs outside of buildings are perfectly legal, 3) the city code is very poorly organized and is a PITA  to read, 4) I’d still like a much more thorough explanation of exactly what signs are legal and what signs are illegal.  From what I’ve read here and elsewhere, it seems like Luna Park must have received at least one warning prior the the citation.

  • PSPS May 15, 2016 (9:07 pm)

    So, Luna’s owner reveals his sense of entitlement and wants to pick and choose what laws he will follow. Nice.

  • Joe Bags May 15, 2016 (9:53 pm)

    I’m not sure if the city looks out for A frame sign violations but the problem with RVs is the city doesn’t look out for them if they abuse the 72 hour rule. Citizens have to fill out a form on line or make a phone call and even then people have claimed parking enforcement looks the other way. Or RV dwellers get a ticket and just don’t pay it. All violations should be dealt with in a similar fashion. 

    • Kimberley May 16, 2016 (7:03 am)

      The article states that they received a complaint about the sign.

      • OP May 18, 2016 (4:47 pm)

        A complaint. As in ONE. Yes, we should all kow-tow to the LONE complainer.

  • Rule player May 15, 2016 (9:57 pm)

    When is John’s hearing? Is the public welcome?

    • WSB May 15, 2016 (10:18 pm)

      RP, I’ve covered many hearings before the Examiner and yes, they are open to the public. Time/day is in the story, third-to-last line. The chambers are on the 40th floor of the Municipal Tower, which is at 5th and Columbia.

  • old timer May 15, 2016 (10:11 pm)

    IMO, that’s a lot of money.  They should have a small amount for first offense, maybe $25.  After that, well then charge a lot.

  • Keden May 15, 2016 (10:20 pm)

    For crying out loud,  let Luna Park have a small sign on the sidewalk! They’re a great member of our community.  I’m not sure if this is a tempest in a teapot or a first world problem.

  • dsa May 15, 2016 (10:24 pm)

    Those signs are ugly wherever they are placed.

  • bolo May 15, 2016 (10:29 pm)

    What if the city could round up all these signs and put ’em out on display all over the East Admiral tree-cutting site?

    • KM May 16, 2016 (10:10 am)

      Would it be kid-friendly?

  • Mary S May 15, 2016 (10:38 pm)

    So does this mean I can do a “citizen’s arrest” of these signs and move them back to their owners?

    • WSB May 15, 2016 (10:47 pm)

      We had a discussion of that here years ago and I don’t think there was a conclusive answer. Reportedly some of the signs are placed by a company that specializes in hauling the A-frames around before the weekend and then picking them up afterward; while I’ve found the names of companies that will make A-frames for you, I’ve never found the name of this mysterious company or companies. I asked the SDOT contact about that and she said that regardless of whether someone placed the signs for you, if it’s out of compliance, the business named on the sign is who’s liable. – TR

  • Jeanie May 15, 2016 (11:45 pm)

    C.J. Boffoli, I noticed the ugly Colombia City real-estate posters while I was taking a walk up Admiral a few days ago. I tore some of them off and dumped them into the recycle. I suggest we all do likewise if we can. As for Luna Park, Chemist, thank you for the link. The incident you allude to was resolved way back in 2008. “Violation of Land Use Code- Permit condition- Parking at east side removed, outdoor seating illegally established at east side of the property.” 

    If the owner was previously warned about the sign, I can understand if he gets a fine the second time around. But not for a first offense. Just a stern warning and perhaps a small fine would suffice. We want small, independent businesses to survive, don’t we?

  • Jeanie May 15, 2016 (11:47 pm)

    As for the “A-frame” signs for apartments not even in Seattle, would I get in trouble if I kick them over? ; )

  • WestSeattleDad May 16, 2016 (1:02 am)

    The drivel posted here about the signs is so typical of the petty whining to which this city has succumbed. Luna Park Cafe is a landmark business in West Seattle and part of the fabric of this community. The A-frame is there to entice visitors coming off the bridge to support a West Seattle business, and is no more an eyesore than half of the overgrown and neglected residences in this area. Of course, it supports an entrepreneurial enterprise, and that’s obviously offensive to the population here who protests Shell in their kayaks made from materials derived from petrochemicals, propelled by paddles constructed from the same products and who’s occupants are adorned with technical gear ALSO constructed of materials made with components equally as “offensive”. What a bunch of self serving hypocrites you are……Heaven forbid someone work hard, invest their own heart, soul and financial resources to EARN their prosperity. Just fine the capitalist jerks….after all they must be evil for trying to make a profit, support themselves and their families without your blessing. If you want to do something meaningful, go out and support the local businesses who have made West Seattle special. If you don’t, stop whining about the changes that are happening and the transformation that is currently happening in WS. I love West Seattle and all that it has to offer to us as residents. Beating up on a landmark and praising the city for issuing a ridiculous and inconsistent citation isn’t a way to laud those things that make us special. 

    • Admiral Mom May 16, 2016 (7:42 am)

      Agree. Somebody must have complained over and over about this specific A frame sign. Thank you neighbors, investing your time in targeting a small business is going to advance our city in which way? 

      Sooooo petty

  • JanS May 16, 2016 (1:40 am)

    always an advisory committee, never any action…SMFH   :(

  • Garythehottie May 16, 2016 (2:35 am)

    The owners of Luna park need to offer who ever is complaining a free double cheeseburger and side of crinkle cut fries.. Issue solved 

  • sbre May 16, 2016 (5:30 am)

    The 4 ‘Columbia City condo posters’ attached to the two telephone poles alongside my home didn’t last 24 hours, the other 30 or so signs in the neighborhood have been slowly going away as well.

    It appears there are a lot of locals who don’t like the sight of ’em!

  • candrewb May 16, 2016 (5:32 am)

    What about campaign signs no one seems to want to be responsible enough after an election? Can we start fining candidates who leave them be?

  • Ronnie May 16, 2016 (5:39 am)

    Thanks Mayor…you have done a wonderful job destroying Seattle…

    send enforcement to crack down l small  business, increase parking fees, garbage police, declare emergency the off to the parade…meanwhile opening all the streets and nooks and crannies for homeless to camp out

  • Artsea May 16, 2016 (5:49 am)

    I find these signs less offensive  than restaurants which extend their outdoor seating areas well onto the public sidewalk, forcing pedestrians to alter their walking patterns to pass by. 

  • Gina May 16, 2016 (6:34 am)

    Heck, in the Junction businesses are sticking their signs in the middle of the sidewalk. Saw someone move to let someone pass, they tripped over statuary placed to the side of sign, and for a double whammy had a metal sculpture on the parking strip scrape them on the way down. That kind of sign placement in a high pedestrian usage area vs directionals in a pedestrian unfriendly zone would seem more logical for enforcement.

  • Shawn May 16, 2016 (7:16 am)

    I actively move (and sometimes collapse and set up against a nearby wall) these sidewalk signs that are blocking any portion of the public sidewalk. They are annoying to most of us, but they are a hazard to someone with vision/mobility impairment. That being said, I can’t recall the Luna Park sign ever being in the way on the sidewalk. It has always been near one of the support columns. The city should be making an example out of a different offender.

  • Peter May 16, 2016 (7:29 am)

    Thanks to the city for cracking down. I’m all for A frame sign within reason, but they’re out of control. And no, Luna Park, the 27 years you’ve been violating the law does not excuse you from the law, it just makes you the most egregious violator. You were warned, you continued to break the law, you got fined. Now pay up and comply with the same laws everyone else has to. 

  • CanDo May 16, 2016 (7:49 am)

    I would like to know how many citations have been given to those large apartment complexes that place their signs all over West Seattle.   Why would Luna Park’s one lowly little sign be such a bone of contention for someone when there are dozens of other signs from the big complexes in the same area? 

  • newnative May 16, 2016 (8:04 am)

    I have always hated those dumb signs, they are clutter.  I have seen a blind guy trip right into one in front of Hotwire Coffee because it was fully in the sidewalk.  They are knocked over in the windstorms and left to block the sidewalks a lot.  If I see them, I made sure not to give those companies my business.  

    As for John Bennett, “small business owner”?  Isn’t he a fairly prominent (commercial) landlord here?  I’m sure he understands property codes and laws, if he violates them willingly, he can pay the $500.  

  • Alki Neighbor May 16, 2016 (8:11 am)

    I am very sorry Luna Park was fined for their sandwich-board sign. I thought it was there to help people find the cafe. My various North Seattle friends who meet me there get confused under the West Seattle bridge.

  • KHARMA May 16, 2016 (8:16 am)

    The law about RV parking on city streets it widely misunderstood.  Except in some industrial areas, a vehicle over 80″ wide cannot be parked on the street  between midnight and 6am.  This is stronger than the 72 hour rule that applies to other vehicles.

  • T Rex May 16, 2016 (8:18 am)

    Great post WestSeattleDad, I am with you on this one.

    Slightly off subject but while at the drive up Starbucks this weekend, I wondered how long it will take for the new residents of the apartment building directly in front of Alki Lumber to ask the owner to get rid of his large red sign, another West Seattle local business.  That sign is on 24/7 and like Luna Park is a staple of what West Seattle is. Or was.

  • Alki Neighbor May 16, 2016 (8:19 am)

    P.S. What about real estate “OPEN HOUSE” signs at the end of a block? Are those illegal, too? 

  • Me May 16, 2016 (8:19 am)

    People sure care an awful lot about other people’s business these days.  Heaven forbid I should forget to make my bed one day – it’s liable to end up all over the news!  

    Social media has turned everyone into bullies.  How about “live and let live”?  How about love instead of hate? 

    WestSeattleDad, I couldn’t agree with you more.

  • Brian May 16, 2016 (8:39 am)

     One of the great joys in life is knocking those things over or throwing them in the trash.

    • WSB May 16, 2016 (8:55 am)

      Since the discussion has meandered, couple points: (1) A-frame signs are permitted adjacent to the business they promote, though there are specifics about not blocking the right of way. Last time we had a story or Forum discussion in which these signs came up, I found a much simpler and clearer statement of city rules but try as I did, I could not find anything this time – in the wake of a city website overhaul – besides the long and murky sign code section I quoted. (2) The complaint that led to the warnings and citation involving the LPC sign led to warnings to other businesses as well, including the nearby bicycle business, John Bennett mentioned. If anyone else was ultimately cited, i haven’t heard from them, but he acknowledges, as reported above, that he was cited following warnings. (3) Someone mentioned real-estate / open-house signs. They have several sections in the sign code.

  • John May 16, 2016 (9:35 am)

    Thanks for the clarification WSB.  

    If only people would read the pieces you write before posting?

    It appears Mr.  Bennett is leveraging community support of his much loved Luna Park Cafe to wilfully dis-obey the law and challenge the code.  If he prevails, we should see A-frames proliferating and partially blocking every sidewalk.

    After reading about Mr. Bennett’s properties in the Seattle Times, I would suggest he (legally) place sandwich signs advising sidewalk traffic and building tenants of  the likelihood of the un-reinforced brick walls of his buildings catastrophically  collapsing onto the sidewalk and inhabitants in the predicted earthquake.  Mr. Bennett claims he is not able to retrofit the buildings without raising rents and forcing out tenants.  Other West Coast cities have wisely mandated earthquake retrofits of un-reinforced brick structures.  Seattle has not.  

    This allows property owners to put tenants and the public at risk.  

    It also allows unfair price competition because with two similar buildings, one with costly retrofits, one without, the one without may charge a lower rent and still make a larger profit margin than the retrofit building. 

  • Born on Alki59 May 16, 2016 (9:43 am)

    Great posts WS Dad and ME.

    I have no issue with well placed sandwich boards as long as they don’t pose a hazard to pedestrians or traffic. (Like so many do in the junction)

    If fines are to be imposed, fine everyone in violation after issuing one warning.  

    While we’re on the subject of signs, please remove your yard sale signs immediately after the sale is over…..jheeshh. 

    • Chemist May 16, 2016 (10:25 am)

      There’s an issue with “well placed” but “away from premesis” – “I well placed the sign that morning and then someone must have moved it into the middle of the sidewalk during the day”.

  • hey lady May 16, 2016 (9:56 am)

    I would be surprised if the fine came without warning. 

  • Kathy May 16, 2016 (10:12 am)

    Another reason not to patronize this business. I won’t ever forget that Luna Park Cafe fought the placement of a Rapid Ride stop across the street because they wanted to preserve their right to rely on public right of way street parking for their customers. A Rapid Ride stop at that location would have been more convenient for those of us who live in Alki (and would probably have brought Luna Park Cafe more customers).  They seem to care more about the kind of customers who arrive by car and could probably care less about signs blocking visibilty and pedestrian safety/access.

  • West Seattle Hipster May 16, 2016 (10:55 am)

    Is there a GoFund Me account set up so folks can help pay the citation?

    • WSB May 16, 2016 (11:01 am)

      WSH, if you’re asking seriously, keep in mind that the fine is on hold pending the outcome of the hearing. The examiner usually takes a week or two to write the ruling.

  • John H. May 16, 2016 (12:37 pm)

    As one of my former bosses used to say “don’t make me have to make a rule or policy – you know when you are doing something you shouldn’t”. As I typically jog past that location where the Luna Park A frame sign (and many others) is/was located I can say that I can see the fine being totally justified due to the large number of in-the-way signs. The fine is fine as long as:
    – Warnings were given prior to citations
    – Everyone with a sign was treated the same

    Just because you are a beloved small business doesn’t mean you get to flout the rules. Same thing if you are a non-beloved huge apartment complex – it doesn’t get to flout the rules as well.

    On a related note, it feels like the City of Seattle is really hit or miss on enforcement of such things as these signs, parking violations, etc. It doesn’t take much time to find grievous violations of these sign rules, parking infractions, etc. here in West Seattle, so why doesn’t the city enforce them more regularly, especially when it seems the fines could easily pay for the people-power required to enforce them?

    The more population dense we become the more important it will be to enforce these types of regulations/rules otherwise things get out of hand quickly and the quality of life here in our slice of the city will degrade precipitously.

    • Jon Wright May 16, 2016 (1:00 pm)

      It feels to me like the city is hit or miss on the enforcement of EVERYTHING. :(

  • KBear May 16, 2016 (12:40 pm)

    If the city allows this sign to remain, what would stop everyone else from putting up signs wherever they feel like it? 

  • Jw May 16, 2016 (12:56 pm)

    It would be nice to see something like a mural painted in than spot. Maybe have arrows pointing to the local businesses. Problem solved and area beautified! I love Luna park, but they did get a warning….

    • Sevenless May 16, 2016 (1:42 pm)

      There is a permanent sign right behind where those A-frames were located that says “Welcome to Luna Park” and points left. It doesn’t specifically name the cafe, but it does say “Dining, Shopping, Services”.

      Does anyone know who is responsible for that sign?  It’s also situated on city property, and since there’s nothing else in the area that uses the name Luna Park it’s pretty clear what it’s referring to.  It’s also amusing since the original Luna Park was the other direction at Duwamish Head, but I doubt anyone’s still alive who would be confused by that bit of history.

    • Wsres May 16, 2016 (10:39 pm)

      This is a great idea. I’d donate to a Luna Park mural painted there!

  • mamabear May 16, 2016 (2:46 pm)

    Three cheers for westseattledad. What you said!

  • Jeanie May 16, 2016 (4:08 pm)

    These comments have gotta stop! Now I’m craving one of their malts. Yum.

  • Ken May 16, 2016 (6:05 pm)

    If people truly need an A frame sign in order to find the Luna Park Cafe (which is well within line-of-sight viewing distance from the sign’s location), well, they obviously need more help then that small sign can provide them.  And yes, they are ALL an eyesore and a hazard to some individuals.  Doesn’t matter what business, organization, activity, etc, they are promoting.  

  • Chris R. May 16, 2016 (9:22 pm)

    Common sense people. It’s gone.

  • pilotdoggy May 16, 2016 (10:38 pm)

    Poor John Bennett, I feel so sorry for him.  I just watched the King5 News story and and he actually said that he “can’t afford” the $500 fine.  He is really looking for people to feel sorry for him here and of course this story will only serve to increase his business at Luna Park Cafe.  If people are not aware, he is one of the largest commercial real estate owners in all of Georgetown which include several successful bars and cafes which are quite busy whenever I have frequented them.  I have also seen him driving one of his other expensive toys, a beautiful $30,000 plus customized Harley.  Sometimes I cannot believe the media does not vet these stories before airing them.  They make him look like such a poor victim, hogwash!!   

    • WSB May 16, 2016 (10:50 pm)

      Pilotdoggy, we found and broke this story (TV has a long pattern of lifting ideas from other publications) and we certainly didn’t say or even infer that he can’t afford it, nor did he tell us that, so how that wound up in the TV copycat story, got no clue. We certainly DID vet it – as I wrote, I happened onto this while checking the Hearing Examiner website several weeks ago, pulled up and read the documents, and then spent a couple days playing phone tag with John Bennett after he agreed via e-mail to talk with us about it. We made several checks of intersections over subsequent weekends to look for signs, and I sought out the SDOT rep to find out how many citations they’d issued. I didn’t write this to suggest he was a victim; what I thought was interesting was that he is fighting the citation. – TR

      • pilotdoggy May 17, 2016 (6:22 pm)


        He actually said point blank to the camera “I can’t afford $500!”  I only made the comment since I know about the guy and found it quite amazing that he would try to fleece the public with a comment like that. Not that I necessarily agree with the city, but I just thought his comment was ridiculous for a guy like him to say.  I also do agree with one of the other posters, that if he is breaking the law with the signs, then a $500 fine after 27 years is actually a great deal, which works out to be $18.52 fine per year for the use of the sign, not bad!! 

  • WS gal May 16, 2016 (10:40 pm)

    First- city ordinance is silly anyway. Just because you had a sign there for 25 years …doesn’t mean things stay the same?!!! What do we do now for the most part that we did 25 years ago?!? As much as I understand why Luna park feels this is unfair. 

  • Stuck between Gatewood and Fauntleroy May 16, 2016 (11:51 pm)

    If they are placed illegally, can they complain if they suddenly disappear? Get a free A-board, and you help a business avoid a fine. ;)

  • Lonnie May 16, 2016 (11:59 pm)

    This is what our great city has become.  I’m curious as to if I stood at this same spot and physically held a sign if I would be in violation not to mention all of the garage sale signs attached to our street poles every weekend that sometimes never get removed.  I agree with the other comments about all of the motorhomes and campers parked around the city that appear to have a complete free ticket yet the finds time to enforce the signboard ordinance.  It is only going to get worse in Seattle.

  • Sean Taeschner May 17, 2016 (12:46 pm)

    What a crock!  This is just ONE MORE EXAMPLE of how MONEY HUNGRY the City of Seattle has become due to lost tax revenue via the slowing economy.  It is hard enough to be in business with all the setup costs and taxes and cost of goods.  Ultimately, customers end up being stuck with the bill, again.  Most end up paying parking fees due to the incessant meter maid patrols as well.

    I hope he wins the appeal.  

    • Jon Wright May 19, 2016 (2:05 pm)

      I do not believe that enforcement of existing laws (be they business signs or parking) is an example of the city being “money hungry.” It’s not like they just passed a law to snare this guy–it’s the same ordinance that’s been on the books for an eternity. I find it frustrating that the city has so many laws that DON’T get enforced and so I am happy to see some action.

      • WSB May 19, 2016 (2:06 pm)

        Somebody actually made that comment at the hearing, which is already over; lasted barely 25 minutes. Ruling within a week; story to come. – TR

  • Sadtaco May 17, 2016 (10:34 pm)

    So he’s been doing this for 27 years and was recently warned to remove his sign. He chose to ignore the warning and he was fined. What more can you say? He was warned and he ignored it. I don’t see why he should be exempted from the law.

  • TM May 18, 2016 (6:58 am)

    Best shakes in town

  • 22blades May 18, 2016 (7:14 am)

    I understand the sentiment against Mr. Bennett and his citation and following appeal. The problem for me is a bigger picture. These developers will have their way with zoning variances and looking at a “measly” $500 citation as just another cost of business. That’s probably why you don’t see them appealing their citation(s). When’s the last time a “Notice of Land Use” meeting ever make a difference? You the taxpayer will foot their bill when they keep building “mixed use” units without one iota of infrastructure upgrades when they fill the streets with more cars.

    By the way, those mixed use retail fronts? They’re not called fronts for nothing. They build quaint little units but if you look at them being framed, they have convenient “knockouts” so they can snag a big, out of town retailer needing two or three fronts. If you are a small local business looking for a storefront, good luck. They’re gunning for Petco.

Sorry, comment time is over.