Too Early for Toms River Campaign Signs?

TOMS RIVER – Is it too early for campaign lawn signs? The township Republican club president took a shot at the Democratic council challengers over the issue via social media this weekend. One Democratic candidate, asked to respond, pushed back and lobbed his own criticism at the incumbent Republican administration.

Toms River GOP leader Bob DiBiase was on the offensive against a slate of Democratic challengers by way of social media this weekend. DiBiase was critical of the fact that the Democratic council candidates had placed campaign signs at numerous locations in Toms River, before the Republicans were able to get their signs out. He alleged that the Democrats were not in compliance with the law, but did not cite a specific statute or provision of the township code.

Bob DiBiase


“The Toms River Republicans will wait and avoid blighting the town with the obligatory campaign signs that our democrat antagonists decided to start 8 days earlier than the law allows,” DiBiase said in an official statement that was posted to the Toms River GOP Facebook page.

Daniel Rodrick, a Democratic council candidate, struck back at the GOP when asked to respond to DiBiase’s campaign sign criticism by a reporter.

“The mail-in ballots landed last week,” Rodrick said when asked to respond. “The election is already underway and we are in full compliance with the ordinance.”

The council candidate later pivoted to a swipe at a recent wave of development occurring in northern portions of the township. In the wake of rapid growth from neighboring Lakewood, development has become a thorny political issue in Toms River.

“Mr. DiBiase is trying to distract attention away from the Avalanche of development the Republicans are enabling in North Dover,” Rodrick concluded.

OCP Poll:

[poll id=”47″]


Gavin Rozzi

Gavin Rozzi is the editor of Ocean County Politics and a lifelong Ocean County resident, residing in Lacey Township. Gavin's work centers on the intersection of money and politics in Ocean County, with a focus on public corruption. In 2017 he created New Jersey's first statewide freedom of information portal, He can be reached via email at or via phone at (732)-504-3636 ext. 1 or on encrypted phone / text app Signal.

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65 Responses

  1. imagine that says:

    Kindergarten nonsense. Like children in a playground. Nothing better to do or complain about? I can think of a ton of things in OC that need to be addressed and it doesn’t concern signs.

  2. guest says:

    So what is the law regarding signs? When can they be put on public property, how many days before the election? Seems that would answer if the Dem’s put their signs up early. Also, this Rodrick guy, if I am not mistaken is like a 4 or 5 time loser running in Toms River elections.

    • Mac says:

      Chump change compared to the endless list of 8 or 10 or 13 time losers that have been elected and reelected to office in Ocean County for the past 60 to 80 years at least without fail.

  3. Mustang Sally says:

    Toms River, the once nice Seaside Town was destroyed by Gilmore &Co.

    Is Christie holding back the AG or FBI? Just can’t figure it out between Gilmore Law Firm, the Party Boss himself, the Illegals, Fraud, Mismanaged Money, the Orthodox Jews…….you would think they would have set up camp by now.

    • imagine that says:

      Not only Toms River, and yes the corruption is rampant and it’s mind boggling that nothing gets done. How can someone that doesn’t pay their taxes and is under investigation get to represent all the municipalities?

      • guest says:

        § 427-5

        Political signs. (Toms River)

        [Amended 4-25-2017 by Ord. No. 4545-17]

        Political signs are permitted for period of commencing 30 days prior to the election and seven days subsequent to the election. No political sign shall be attached or affixed to any telephone pole, utility pole or light standards. No political sign shall be placed in the public right-of-way of any roadway or in the sight triangle of an intersection as defined in Chapter 348, Land Use and Development Regulations. Violations of this provision shall be subject to the penalty enumerated in § 427-3D(5), (6) and (7) of the Code. Any political signs which are placed in violation of these regulations shall be removed by the Township officials at the expense of the person or political organization who so located the sign.

    • Mac says:

      We’re still looking for a couple of government officials in a position of authority that have enough public credibility to be able to both pursue and charge corrupt government/political officials without becoming headline public hypocrites themselves. So that leaves Christie and any of his AG’s out automatically. As for the FBI, they haven’t been looking much better for the past 15 years either, for sure. I personally believe that this is a result of Christie’s much less than honorable leadership of the US Prosecutor’s Office, and this belief pans out quite successfully without a doubt on paper and a chart. There’s NO ONE out of that office that you would want any of your children to grow like, especially if they are to represent the proud values that America stands for worldwide.

      I suggest you don’t hold your breath for such to happen though. Until the Ocean County voters clear their house of it’s 100% elected/appointed political deadweight, Ocean County is never going to have a responsible community quality of life. It will just continue to stumble along with it’s never-ending line of freshly painted orange cones bearing third-world excuses offered regularly from our elected pubic parasite specialized representations of government.

      If Ocean County government ran North Korea, the citizens of North Korea wouldn’t even have bark left to eat of their trees. Neither Gilmore nor Vicari have ever been capable of performing anything without a personal return for themselves required. However, black market tree chips can be quite profitable, especially without competition to worry about, like real food.

      It’s home sweet home folks. It can be all they you make it, or it can be all that you don’t make it.

  4. Tommy H. says:

    Toms River statute- Rodrick and company DID break the rules,Political signs are permitted for period of commencing 30 days prior to the election and seven days subsequent to the election. No political sign shall be attached or affixed to any telephone pole, utility pole or light standards. No political sign shall be placed in the public right-of-way of any roadway or in the sight triangle of an intersection.

    • Callofthewild says:

      Well that Is where Rodeyrick and his crew have there signs right in the right away in the roads. Way to go Roddy.

      • Bird says:

        This Roddy guy hes lost like 5 times already?

        • Mac says:

          Again, chump change. Look how many dozens of times the public has continued to lose in the past five decades at the very minimum. I mean, when one looks at anyone elected as a Ocean County Freeholder throughout its history, one can’t help being overwhelmed with the impression that its status has never amounted to more than a little kids backyard treehouse of lifetime public welfare abusers. Those not in the know often confuse the Freeholder building in Toms River with an out of area Seaside slum motel.

  5. Guest says:

    It was not that the Democrats were able to put the signs out 8 days earlier then the Republicans. It was the the Democrats put them up 8 days earlier then the law allows.

    • Mustang Sally says:

      Who cares!

      • Guest says:

        Of course,that statement from you is expected. If the Repub’s put the signs out before it was legal ,you would not be making that statement. You would care.

        • imagine that says:

          Maybe she just doesn’t care about signs and is focused on what really needs to be done; something the “Repub’s” don’t care about.

        • Mustang Sally says:

          I truly don’t care. Now my Country spending 135 Billion a year on Illegals is pissing me off, but not the sign placement in TRivers.

  6. Mac says:

    Thank you Mr. DiBiase for giving the Democrats more publicity than they have had throughout this entire campaign season so far. If it weren’t for you, who would have noticed these signs anyway? Now drivers are looking about to see where they are located. WTG!

  7. #AmnestyDonisaCon says:

    Does this Republicon candidate back the Republicon tax cheat Happy Gilmore? That alone should be reason not to vote Republicon Friends N Family in TR
    Lock UP Happy Gilmore


    To the editor:

    Many people like to express their support for a political candidate with a yard sign. Sometimes this form of freedom of expression conflicts with a city law banning or limiting the time in which political signs may be displayed. The question becomes whether such municipal laws infringe upon citizens’ and perhaps the candidates’ First Amendment rights.

    Some municipal officials claim that putting limits on yard signs furthers a variety of state interests, including aesthetics and traffic safety. However, opponents of such regulations counter that yard signs, unlike perhaps large billboards too close to public streets, do not in any way reduce traffic safety. They also contend that aesthetic interests pale in comparison to the importance of political speech expressed in campaign signs.

    In 1994, the U.S. Supreme Court noted that residential signs have long been an important and distinct form of expression that enjoys the highest level of constitutional protection. At that time, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor wrote “with rare exceptions, content discrimination in regulations on the speech of private citizens on private property is presumptively impermissible.”

    The Haddon Heights’ political sign ban violates the right to free speech both under the United States Constitution and the New Jersey Constitution. The total prohibition on political signs in the Borough does not serve a legitimate purpose and restricts speech, especially by precluding the time-honored right of Americans to express political messages through the placement of signs on their lawns. Additionally, the ordinance impermissible grants greater protection to commercial speech than to political speech, as other types of signs are permitted in residential districts, including real estate signs, church signs, and signs promoting events. Although the Borough agreed not to enforce the political sign ban, unless that portion of the ordinance is formally repealed, the ACLU-NJ will still file a lawsuit.

    “New Jersey’s towns need to know that overreaching limitations on lawn signs are unconstitutional and that the ACLU-NJ is ready to defend the public’s rights against such restrictions,” stated ACLU-NJ Legal Director Edward Barocas, who previously obtained an injunction against the Borough of Franklin Lakes for restricting the use of political lawn signs. “Especially in the midst of a national election, the right to freedom of speech must be zealously protected.”

    The Montgomery County Council voted to repeal a provision that requires property owners to remove lawn signs after 30 days or pay $30 to apply for a permit to keep them up longer.

    The American Civil Liberties Union had argued that the time limit — a provision in a larger sign ordinance that had been in place since 1998 — violates the First Amendment right to free speech, and the organization was threatening to sue the county.
    Also in 1994, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Missouri city law prohibiting signs at private residences. Margaret Gilleo ran afoul of the law when she placed a 24-by-36-inch sign in her front lawn with the words, “Say No to War in the Persian Gulf, Call Congress Now” and an 8 ½-by-11-inch sign in the second-story window of her home that read, “For Peace in the Gulf.”

    A unanimous U.S. Supreme Court rejected the ordinance in City of Ladue v. Gilleo, writing that residential yard signs were “a venerable means of communication that is both unique and important.” The Court explained:

    “Displaying a sign from one’s own residence often carries a message quite distinct from placing the sign someplace else, or conveying the same text or picture by other means. … Residential signs are an unusually cheap and convenient form of communication. Especially for persons of modest means or limited mobility, a yard or window sign may have no practical substitute. … Even for the affluent, the added costs in money or time of taking out a newspaper advertisement, handing out leaflets on the street, or standing in front of one’s house with a handheld sign may make the difference between participating and not participating in some public debate.”

    Lower courts have cited the Gilleo precedent with great success in challenging city bans on political yard signs. In Curry v. Prince George’s County (1999), a federal district court in Maryland invalidated a sign ordinance that limited the posting of political campaign signs in private residences to 45 days before and up to 10 days after an election. “There is no distinction to be made between the political campaign signs in the present case and the ‘cause’ sign in City of Ladue,” the court wrote. “When political campaign signs are posted on private residences, they merit the same special solicitude and protection established for cause signs in City of Ladue.”

    In Arlington County Republican Committee v. Arlington County (1993), a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals invalidated a county law that imposed a two-sign limit on temporary signs for each residence. The court noted that “The two-sign limit infringes on this speech by preventing homeowners from expressing support for more than two candidates when there are numerous contested elections.”

    Taking another example, the Supreme Court of Ohio ruled in City of Painesville Building Department v. Dworken & Bernstein Co. (2000) that a city law requiring the removal of political signs within 48 hours after an election is unconstitutional as applied to the posting of such signs on private property. “Although the Supreme Court has not considered the issue, the overwhelming majority of courts that have reviewed sign ordinances imposing durational limits for temporary political signs tied to a specific election date have found them to be unconstitutional,” the court wrote.

    This does not mean that cities can never legislate in the area of political signs. A city may regulate the size, shape and location of yard signs. Such regulations may very well qualify as content-neutral and reasonable “time, place and manner” restrictions on speech. Similarly, a city may be able to establish a 10-sign limit per residence on yard signs. At some point, the sheer number of signs might realistically impair the aesthetics of a neighborhood.

    Lawn signs on private property are protected. Politicians who put their political signs on public right-a-ways alongside highways, roads, streets are not legal. They cannot use public property or funds for political activities.

    • Mercy Otis Warren says:

      Nice editorial Mr. LeTellier; lots of good information. I would only add that I think pretty much all regulation of first amendment activity on private property should be invalid — as long as the activity is not infringing on the equal rights of neighbors. Also, why shouldn’t public property be available for first amendment activity? After all, it is the people’s property. And I am pretty sure public property is in fact used regularly.

      • Guest says:

        Correct, public property is used regularly but there are limits on it as far as local ordinances. In Tom’s river the ordinance States 30 days prior to an election otherwise it’s illegal. However as you can see the democrats did not pay attention this year.

        • #AmnestyDondaConmoron says:

          You must like getting Fleeced by Ocean County RepubliCONs or you are a member of the Friends N Family Plan or a member of the Haventy Yetter Club in waiting to become a member of the Friends N Family Plan or all of the above
          Trump U was a FRAUD

        • Mercy Otis Warren says:

          I am not necessarily against flaunting silly laws. Violate away; rely on the 1st!

  9. #EndFriendsNFamilyplan says:

    Write in Gavin Rozzi for TC and start to end the Friends N Family plan at least they would be exposed here
    Gavin Rozzi for TC

  10. Mercy Otis Warren says:

    “Political signs are permitted for period of commencing 30 days prior to the election and seven days subsequent to the election.”

    Does this include political signs on private property? If so, this statute should definitely be deemed unconstitutional. You should be able to keep political signs up on your property all year round if you want; none of the town’s business. If the sign is so big that it blocks the sun from coming in your neighbors bay window, that is a different story. That is a nuisance tort, but otherwise I can not see how it is the town’s business.

    • Mercy Otis Warren says:

      BTW: what is: “period of commencing”? Did they leave out the words “a” and “time”? I guess this is the kind of legal writing one would expect from Gilmore and company.

      • #IamAmnestyDondaCon says:

        I agree
        I would also argue since you can vote via mail in ballots the “period of commencing” has begun
        Besides A Dead RepubliCON would still win and Happy Gilmore a known tax cheat is still being employed by towns all over Ocean County
        a admitted Fraud is in the White House

  11. brez brez says:

    What I don’t like is that Lou Gallopoli is running for office and he and his republican friends plant their signs on Green Acres property which IS Illegal. If you don’t know that your doing something illegal you shouldn’t be running for office.

    • Cuddy says:

      Do you really think he has a clue he was hand picked . I think when he comes out of the ether he will probably say “why did I run”. Someone need a job at Town Hall, DPW, MUA?

    • Guest says:

      LMAO. Can you unequivocally say none of your Democrat friends and cronys put signs in any spot that they should not ever? Paleez.

      • brez brez says:

        Only the republicans have brass ones to put their campaign signs at
        The foot of the sign dedicating freedom park to those who lost their lives on 9/11, that is arrogant and ignorant on his campaigns part. And frankly you don’t know who my friends are, speak about what you know about. I’m a registered republican!

        • Guest says:

          Hate to disappoint you but the democrats had their signs there also.

          • brez brez says:

            You’re confused, there were two signs at freedom park both Republicans, were there signs at castle park yes but not Freedom Park. Did you call in the complaint? I know I did, only then were they removed

          • guest says:

            You are also confused. There were D signs that are now removed. Same as you are claiming the R’s did. Of course you will only mention the R signs,

          • brez brez says:

            Are the Signs gone? Did you call in the Complaint? I doubt it. You probably thought Ritacco was the Gold Standard of School Superintendents, just a thought

          • Guest says:

            Don’t know anything about ritacco however you should check your facts before you make a statement. Signs are gone. Republicans and democrats had their signs there.

          • brez brez says:

            Guest, if you don’t know anything about Ritacco, you have no credibility. did you fall from outer space or are you like Hillary Clinton, you don’t know anything

          • guest says:

            Yes I know about him. However he has nada to do with the Dem’s putting signs where they do not belong last week.

          • brez brez says:

            That’s not what you said in your post. Ritacco is relevant because it’s the mind set of people who support this administration

          • Guest says:

            So why did the democrats put signs up also?

          • brez brez says:

            Look when I call up and complain I don’t care who has a sign up. Freedom park if you even know where that is there were two signs up Galopolli and the republican school board. The town dedicated that’s park to people who died and then you put signs up under their dedication give me a brake

          • guest says:

            I know exactly where it is as that is where I saw the D signs.

          • brez brez says:

            Frankly you’ve lied once I don’t believe you!

          • Mac says:

            If only the voters would endorse such an important and necessary value for their futures, and the future opportunities for their families to be able to grow within, then arguments over campaign sign abuses would give way to correcting wholesale political corruption abuses that actually make a difference in our failing quality of life as a society.

          • brez brez says:

            What you don’t understand is that the signs are the beginning of the corruption, when you think as a party you can plant signs with little or no regard as to where you’re putting the signs it has a certain arrogance attached to the act. I often think that the people running our town must not drive to their jobs they must helicopter themselves into town hall, they don’t see what I see, I have to call up and complain about stuff they see but are too lazy to do anything about it. All the little things are important even the signs, this is where we live!

          • Mac says:

            Trust me, I understand political signs, their value, their placement and the goodwill they can earn to enhance the voters’ values in their gifted votes of political support. I created a campaign sign policy that warmed the hearts of many in the community after they allowed us the honor to sit on the township committee dais to help represent them again as a political party.

            Unfortunately, what most of us endeavored to accomplish was immediately compromised before these two Donald Trump pre-market test dummies were even sworn into office, intimidated by the financial power and pricey self-rewarding offerings obtained through Gilmore’s office, among others. And as this was made crystal clear to us, it goes without saying it didn’t take long for our paths to separate. And I know this as a fact, because I sat in on a few of them.

            Regardless, my personally created goodwill sign policy is still being employed by the current Gilmore stooges still happily raping and abusing the original value of this goodwill sign policy for their own self-serving benefits of deceptions.

            For those in the know, how is that Mezzina three-story boarded-up trailer eyesore that’s falling apart directly across the street from the county-owned Atlantis Golf Course Clubhouse entrance for well over a dozen years working out for ya. I’m sure that with the quality of government still in total control of LEH now, I’m sure it’s improvement has advanced about as much in community value and respect as the now-jungle hidden section-eight apartment complex broken-up foundation that these current Gilmore shills purchased from Mezzina for $450,000 of township taxpayer money because, as Gormley once publicly stated, the township might want to expand it’s Taz Mahal parking lot in 30 or so years.

            Of course, the fact that Mezzina couldn’t turn over a profit with an honest sale after the expenses of the cleanup necessities to turn a profit on the sale of this property, the usual suckers that keep these opportunistic bought and sold embarrassments in office, paid through the nose to be raped again. And the beat goes on………and on…………and on.

            brez brez, your heart is in the right place. November election sign fights are designed purposely to outrage the public and divert attention away from the true public concerns of the community at-large. It’s not inconceivable that twenty or thirty Friends N Family members have obtained new taxpayer-paid political appointments, with full family benefits, unnoticed, through the backdoor during this on-going discussion of passions, not substance. You are being played.

          • brez brez says:

            Mac, when you want real change, and you know that they are doing something wrong you have to go outside the the local government, you use the Attorney General’s Complaint site, you go to the DCA, or the DEP compliance Department, the signs have a purpose, you let them know you’re watching and complaining no matter what they do.

          • Mac says:

            brez brez, like I said before, you’re heart is in the right place. Keep the faith.

          • guest says:

            Frankly you’ve lied about the R signs a few times I don’t believe you.

          • brez brez says:

            No, I think the only liar on this site is you, you are pathetic!

          • Guest says:

            No, I think the only liar on this site is you, you are a sad sack!

          • #bonespursAmnestyDondaconfraud says:

            Friend N Family Plan Member “Professional” Friend N Family Plan Member or a on the kneeler haven’t yetter Republicon Stooge? Let me guess a defender of Happy Gilmore?

    • Mac says:

      Seriously? This is Ocean County. If they didn’t have any previous elected service position, and didn’t showcase themselves actively training for illegal service performance during the campaign, who would trust them enough to vote for them? Ocean County voters maintain stubborn traditions, and if you are honest, or even appear to be honest, than you definitely can’t be trusted to represent the established values of the community. And that’s written in stone.

      I mean, in our present sad chapter as a nation that has developed such a shocking lack of quality in the corrupted society that we have created for ourselves, one would have a better chance of getting elected as a Kardasian cutout than an honest and respectable individual. But from one or more of the mailed glossy daily campaign flyer falsehoods placed in everyone’s mailboxes, you’d discover that we could be saving office space from a Freeholder consolidation to save money, as I’m sure Vicari would eagerly volunteer to keep the Kardasian cutout next to the infamous casting couch in his own less than honorable office.

      Vicari is unquestionably an elected official that works every moment to give himself more bang on our bucks.

  12. #BonespursDondaConFraud says:

    #Big Day today
    First Indictment Day should be a national holiday next yr
    Happy YOU are not far behind pay your taxes

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