On October 20, 2014, a Superior Court judge struck down the City of Los Angeles’s high-profile ban on billboards. The City’s ban prohibited all billboards except those that were specifically permitted under certain agreements and planning districts. The ban also restricted conversion of existing, lawfully-established billboards to digital displays. The City used the ban to force many digital displays across the City to be turned off.
Superior Court Judge Luis A. Lavan found that the City’s ban was unconstitutional both on its face and as applied to forty-five specific permit applications filed by Lamar Central Outdoor, LLC. Judge Lavan concluded that he was not bound by previous federal court decisions that upheld the City’s regulatory scheme because Lamar challenged the ban under the free speech provisions of the California Constitution, which are broader than those protected under the United States Constitution. Continue reading