HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM) - An American tradition to sell off old items could end up costing residents in Holland, if they're not following the rules.
The city is ticketing people for illegally placed garage sale signs because officials say they're all over public property and many times they're never taken down. Cindy Osman is on the lookout for illegally placed garage sale signs to enforce a city ordinance.
"One of our ordinance regulations is that signs not be placed in the right of way," says Osman, Assistant Director of Holland Community and Neighborhood Services.
Every week, Osman's staff removes 50 signs from public property. She says often times the owner leaves a safety hazard behind.
"The nails can be a danger to people who have to service the utilities," says Osman.
Many people don't even know how the ordinance works. Osman pointed out one lady that was hammering a sign on a public tree. Her son explained why.
"We've seen it everywhere, we had no clue it was a city ordinance," says Holland resident, Andrew Pellegrino.
Violating the ordinance comes with a $25 fine.
"It takes the profit right out of the garage sale," says Osman.
Osman says she wants garage sales to make money, as long as its not at the expense of everyone else.
City officials say only repeat offenders will be fined for violating the ordinance. Holland also has a limit of three garage sales per year, otherwise the city would consider the property a business.