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12.04 12.04 Communication of political messages.
12.04(1) (1) In this section:
12.04(1)(a) (a) "Election campaign period" means:
12.04(1)(a)1. 1. In the case of an election for office, the period beginning on the first day for circulation of nomination papers by candidates, or the first day on which candidates would circulate nomination papers were papers to be required, and ending on the day of the election.
12.04(1)(a)2. 2. In the case of a referendum, the period beginning on the day on which the question to be voted upon is submitted to the electorate and ending on the day on which the referendum is held.
12.04(1)(b) (b) "Political message" means a message intended for a political purpose or a message which pertains to an issue of public policy of possible concern to the electorate, but does not include a message intended solely for a commercial purpose.
12.04(1)(c) (c) "Residential property" means property occupied or suitable to be occupied for residential purposes and property abutting that property for which the owner or renter is responsible for the maintenance or care. If property is utilized for both residential and nonresidential purposes, "residential property" means only the portion of the property occupied or suitable to be occupied for residential purposes.
12.04(2) (2) Except as provided in ss. 12.03 or 12.035 or as restricted under sub. (4), any individual may place a sign containing a political message upon residential property owned or occupied by that individual during an election campaign period.
12.04(3) (3) Except as provided in sub. (4), no county or municipality may regulate the size, shape, placement or content of any sign containing a political message placed upon residential property during an election campaign period.
12.04(4) (4)
12.04(4)(a)(a) A county or municipality may regulate the size, shape or placement of any sign if such regulation is necessary to ensure traffic or pedestrian safety. A county or municipality may regulate the size, shape or placement of any sign having an electrical, mechanical or audio auxiliary.
12.04(4)(b) (b) In addition to regulation under par. (a), a municipality may regulate the size, shape or placement of a sign exceeding 11 square feet in area. This paragraph does not apply to a sign which is affixed to a permanent structure and does not extend beyond the perimeter of the structure, if the sign does not obstruct a window, door, fire escape, ventilation shaft or other area which is required by an applicable building code to remain unobstructed.
12.04(5) (5)
12.04(5)(a)(a) The renter of residential property may exercise the same right as the owner to place a sign upon the property under sub. (2) in any area of the property occupied exclusively by the renter. The terms of a lease or other agreement under which residential property is occupied shall control in determining whether property is occupied exclusively by a renter.
12.04(5)(b) (b) The owner of residential property may exercise the right granted under sub. (2) in any portion of the property not occupied exclusively by a renter.
12.04(6) (6) This section does not apply to signs prohibited from being erected under s. 84.30.
12.04 History History: 1985 a. 198; 1993 a. 246; 2005 a. 451; 2009 a. 173.
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2011-12 Wisconsin Statutes updated though 2013 Wis. Act 380 and all Supreme Court Orders entered before June 30, 2014. Published and certified under s. 35.18. Changes effective after July 1, 2014 are designated by NOTES. (Published 7-1-14)