County Starting April 1 With Strict Enforcement of E-911 Sign Ordinance

The deadline for Stephens County homeowners to make sure their E-911 address is posted properly is here.

Stephens County Administrator Phyllis Ayers said that next week, the county will begin citing those who do not have their E-911 address properly posted.

“April 1, which is Monday, is the E-911 signage deadline, so beginning April 1, we will go road-by-road and begin enforcing the E-911 signs,” said Ayers.

According to Stephens County ordinances, the address shall be posted and clearly visible at the driveway of a residence or structure, except in cases such as mobile home parks, apartments, and duplexes, where the number shall be posted on the mobile home, walkway, or apartment door, depending on the situation.

Meanwhile, the city of Toccoa ordinance states that the address shall be placed in a conspicuous manner in a conspicuous place. In the city’s ordinance, places like mobile home parks and apartments must display the number at the front entrance of the dwelling.

Both the city and county ordinances state that each number shall be at least three inches high, reflective, and placed on a contrasting background.

The county ordinance also states that the penalty for not having an address properly posted is $25 per day. The city ordinance states that the fine for not complying can be up to $1,000.

Stephens County E-911 Director Rex Nelms said the purpose of the ordinance is to ensure that all county residents have their designated street address number posted properly so in the time of need for emergency response, the responders are better able to find the resident’s address in a timely manner. According to Nelms, when the incorrect numbers are posted or no numbers are posted, first responders have a difficult time finding the correct address in an emergency.

Stricter enforcement of the E-911 address-posting ordinance comes following statements made by the Land Use Regulation Committee in January. In those statements, the committee told the county commission it felt stricter enforcement of current ordinances was needed and cited the E-911 posting ordinance as an example.

Stephens County began implementing E-911 addresses in early 2008 and E-911 addresses became the sole addresses to be used in January 2009, after a one-year period to convert over.