An ordinance that would ban political advertising on city property and public rights of way was returned to the Planning, Licenses and Development committee for further review. Current state law prohibits the placing of political advertising on public property but this has never stopped candidates from doing just that every election season. Because of this, a new city ordinance was introduced earlier this month in an attempt to clarify the law by indicating the exact locations within Keene that would be off limits. It was recommended (3 to 1) and sent to full council for a final vote.
However, a recent Supreme court ruling, Reed vs Gilbert, has brought into question the constitutionality of such a restriction. It was decided to return the bill back to committee for further scrutiny. City officials as well as members of the public weighed in and it was ultimately decided to reverse the previous decision. This time the committee voted unanimously to “not adopt” the ordinance. Full city council will vote on the proposal at its Nov 3rd meeting.