Rooftop Signs Remain Despite DPNR Citations

Wharfside Village’s prominent — and illegal — rooftop sign greets arrivals. St. John Tradewinds News Photo by Eliza Magro

Department of Planning and Natural Resources is stepping up its enforcement of the law which prohibits any rooftop signs to be displayed in the territory. Several weeks ago, 11 St. John business were cited and given 45 days to remove signs from their rooftops.

The businesses in violation are the Balcony, the Front Yard, Our Market, Love City Mini Mart, Palm Jewelers, Cap’s Place, Denzil Clyne, St. John Eye Care, Dolphin Market, Verace Jewelers and Wharfside Village. 

“They have all been issued a notice of violation,” said DPNR Unit Chief Douglas Hodge. “No one was fined, but they were told the signs have to be removed or other actions will be taken, such as being referred to the attorney general’s office, or fines could be imposed.”

The citations were issued on August 9, according to DPNR spokesperson Jamal Nielsen. The businesses in violation were given the option of requesting a hearing within 10 days of the citation to discuss issues pertaining to the rooftop signs.

One business did respond to a citation issued in May. The new location of Larry’s Landing, across from Wharfside Village, removed its sign just days after the business was notified of the violation.

The other 11 illegal rooftop signs, however, remain. Nielsen urged Hodge to be aggressive in enforcing the V.I. Code, which plainly states that no rooftop signs are allowed in the Virgin Islands.

“This is an ongoing problem, and the business owners seem to be very stubborn,” said Nielsen. “Maybe we need to step up enforcement.”

According to the citations, the businesses must remove their rooftop signs by Sunday, September 23.