Florida City Threatens Fines for Car Dealership’s American Flag Banners

A car dealer in West Palm Beach, Florida, is defiant in the face of threats from city officials to fine him for placing American flag banners on his car lot in violation, they say, of a city ordinance.

Mike Wangle, general manager of a Kia car dealership, told the media that he has been threatened with fines of $1,000 a day for having placed the long American flag-like banners around his business.

“We’re just trying to show our patriotism,” Wangle told the local NBC affiliate on Monday.

City officials have given Wangle until July 6 to remove the banners before fines are assessed. Officials say that there is a city zoning ordinance that prohibits sales signs called “feather banners.” The ban includes banners made of lightweight fabrics or plastic. The city also says that the number of flags a business may post is limited to three.

But Wangle disputes the city’s interpretation of the ordinance. He feels that the banner ban is meant to prohibit “Open” signs or “Sale” signs, not patriotic banners.

“I don’t have a problem taking the banners down if we had banners saying ‘we’re open’, or a ‘big sale’, those are banners,” Wangle said, “but when you’re displaying the American flag, that’s a little different. That’s why we’re kind of upset about it.”

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston, or email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com.


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