Missouri’s billboard industry complains it can’t use the latest, brightest technology to grab our attention.  The industry wants the legislature to loosen up the law so it can.

The billboard industry says 95 percent of existing billboards are considered non-conforming under federal and state law, meaning most signs cannot be substantially repaired or use new technology or cutouts on a long-term basis. 

Executive Director Bill May of the Missouri Outdoor Advertising Association wants a law change saying all those signs would be considered “conforming out of standard.”   Without that change, he says, the industry cannot use digital billboards  or cannot use modern lighting on non-digital boards.

May says the limits under existing law have caused a 15-percent decrease in the number of billboards that are not on a business’s premises. 

The change May wants would mean that the billboards were okay when built but don’t comply with today’s regulations, allowing the use of modern lighting and digital technology that \could change messages in seconds, even allowing more than one advertiser per sign.

 Listen to excerpts of May’s testimony 9:24 mp3