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 March 2024 

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"Starting a new business is always a challenging thing to do. The one thing that every business needs is customers to purchase what they’re selling...Mark B. Morse, Owner Chick-fil-A Lumberton

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Rules & Regulations

Outdoor Advertising is the most strictly regulated media outlet in North Carolina—the industry has to adhere to regulations imposed by Federal, State, County and Municipal entities.  No other major media has to conform to this many layers of regulation.

In addition to adhering to external laws and regulations, the members of the North Carolina Outdoor Advertising Association (NCOAA) have adopted a set of voluntary industry principles. NCOAA endorses this code and encourages its members to operate in conformance with the below listed principles.

Observe Highest Free Speech Standards

  •  We support the First Amendment right of advertisers to promote legal products and services, however, we also support the right of media companies to reject advertising that is misleading, offensive, or otherwise incompatible with individual community standards, and in particular, we reject the posting of obscene words or pictorial content. 

Protect the Children 

  • We are careful to place advertisements for products illegal for sale to minors on advertising displays that are a reasonable distance from the public places where children most frequently congregate.
  • We are committed to a program that establishes exclusionary zones that prohibit stationary advertisements of products illegal for sale to minors that are intended to be read from, at least 500 feet of, elementary and secondary schools, public playgrounds, and established places of worship.
  • We support reasonable limits on the total number of advertising displays in a market that may carry messages about products that are illegal for sale to minors.
  • We seek to maintain broad diversification of customers that advertise using the medium. 

Support Worthy Public Causes 

  • We are committed to providing pro bono public service messages to promote worthy community causes.
  • We advocate the use of outdoor advertising for political, editorial, public service, and other noncommercial messages.

Provide an Effective, Attractive Medium for Advertisers 

  • We are committed to providing value and service to advertisers in communities nationwide.
  • We are committed to maintaining and improving the quality, appearance, and safety of advertising structures and locations.
  • We encourage the use of new technologies to continuously improve the service provided to advertisers and the information provided to the public.
  • We are committed to excellence in the ads we exhibit because our medium provides the most public “art gallery” there is. 

Respect the Environment 

  • We are committed to environmental stewardship.
  • We encourage environmentally friendly business practices for the reduction of waste, improvement of energy efficiency, and use of recyclable materials. 

Provide Effective and Safe Digital Billboards

  • We are committed to ensuring that the commercial and noncommercial messages disseminated on standard-size digital billboards will be static messages and the content shall not include animated, flashing, scrolling, intermittent or full-motion video elements (outside established entertainment areas).
  • We are committed to ensuring that the ambient light conditions associated with standard-size digital billboards are monitored by a light sensing device at all times and that display brightness will be appropriately adjusted as ambient light levels change. 

Uphold Billboard Industry Self Regulation 

  • We support billboard advertising as a business use to be erected in commercial and industrial areas.
  • We support new billboard locations in unzoned commercial and industrial areas only where there is business activity.
  • We oppose the construction of stacked bulletins (i.e., two 14’ x 48’ faces or larger facing in the same direction)
  • We oppose the construction of new billboards on truly scenic segments of highways outside of commercial and industrial areas.
  • We oppose illegal cutting, and are committed to reasonable control and maintenance of vegetation surrounding billboards.
  • We support the expeditious removal of illegally erected billboards without compensation; NCOAA member companies are encouraged to inform responsible authorities if they become aware that illegal billboards are being erected. 

Protect Billboard Industry Rights 

  • We support the right of outdoor advertising companies to maintain lawfully erected billboards.
  • We support laws that assure just compensation for removal of legal billboards.