ROSTRAVER TWP. (KDKA) — A farmers’ market in Rostraver Township is fighting to keep their roadside signs up after being ordered by PennDOT to take them down.
They sit along northbound Route 51, well off the road, alerting folks that fresh produce is waiting.
“I like farmers’ markets so I like the signs they don’t bother me,” said John Perozzi of Monessen.
For many, roadside farm stands and the signs are part of the landscape. But PennDOT doesn’t think so according to Mark Duda.
His family farm runs a stand off Route 51, and they have been stuck in an ongoing battle, but then came a letter from PennDOT informing Duda that he is not allowed to have the signs on private property, even with permission from the land owner.
Citing the Outdoor Advertising Control Act of 1971, the agency told Duda the signs have to be down in 30 days.
“These people are driving 55 down this road. If I can’t let them know by the time they see this sign, they’ll say I’ll just go to another store that’s more convenient. It’s hard for us to compete,” he said.
Word of the sign controversy has made it to the state house. Representative Pam Snyder introduced House Bill 1561 is now in the state senate.
“This legislation makes it hassle free for local farm markets to advertise their stand across the Commonwealth. It’s a no-brainer to us,” she said.
But, until the law is changed Duda is looking at potential losses his business can ill afford.
“It’s almost becoming unbearable, all I wanna do is make a good living for my family that’s it,” he said.