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Proper Sign Placement

The Michigan Vehicle Code, Public Act 300 of 1949, Section 257.615, prohibits the placement of any signs in the road right-of-way that may distract or obstruct the view of the public to see traffic enforcement signs; that blink or resemble traffic control devices; and/or that may create a hazard. The Michigan Vehicle Code further provides that the public authority having jurisdiction over the highway (a road commission), is empowered to remove, from the right-of-way, any such sign as a public nuisance.

A Rule of Thumb for County Primary and Local Roads...

When in doubt, the safest assumption is to place your signs behind sidewalks or utility poles, as these are typically located near the edge of the road right-of-way.

If no utility poles or sidewalks are present, then place your signs a minimum of 33 feet from the center of a two-lane road, and/or 60 feet from the center of a three or more lane road. This is typically considered to be a reasonably safe and adequate distance from the road, and legally out of right-of-way areas.

Signs that are placed within the right-of-way on the Shiawassee County Primary and Local Road systems, which are under the direct jurisdiction and authority of the Shiawssee County Board of Road Commissioners, are subject to removal by the Shiawassee County Road Commission, without notice, as provided by MCL 257.615. The removed signs shall be disposed of immediately by the Shiawassee County Road Commission.

Click here for more information on the county Sign Removal Policy.

On State Highways...

For safety, temporary signs must conform to state regulations for placement.

Signs are not allowed within clear vision areas at intersections or commercial driveways.

Signs must be placed more than 30 feet from the edge of the roadway (or from the white line along the edge) on highways without barrier-type curbs.

On highways with barrier curbs, signs must be more than 3 feet from the back of the curb.

Signs that do not meet these criteria are subject to removal by the Shiawassee County Road Commission, without notice, as provided by MCL 257.615. Sign owners can pick up any removed signs at the Shiawassee County Road Commission. Signs not claimed within seven days of their removal will be discarded.

For more information on MDOT political sign placement standards, visit the MDOT website at:



copyright 2001 Shiawassee County Road Commission