Campaign signs on Montclair High School lawn questioned
By ERIN ROLL
Who placed the campaign signs on the Montclair High School Lawn? No one knows it seems, but it goes against township code.
Signs supporting candidate Mikie Sherrill were placed on the Midland Avenue side of the campus Wednesday afternoon. And some are taking offense to it. All had been take down by Thursday night. But not before some protest.
Montclair has a township ordinance prohibiting campaign signs on public land since 2013. “No political sign shall be erected or displayed on public property, including public rights-of-way and the area extending from the street line or nub to a public sidewalk,” the ordinance reads.
Sherrill, a Montclair resident, is running as the Democratic candidate for the 11th Congressional District. The seat will be vacant after Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen steps down at the end of the year.
The 11th District includes Upper Montclair, as well as much of Morris County.
The district just canceled an appearance by Sherrill when she was to have appeared alone at a planned assembly at the high school on May 8. However, the district made the decision to cancel the assembly, citing district policies about political activity on school property.
But who placed the signs on the lawn is unclear.
Superintendent Kendra Johnson could not be reached for comment on the matter Thursday afternoon.
The Montclair Republican Club sent a letter to the district criticizing the presence of the signs. "Many would argue that it's inappropriate for school grounds to be used for promoting the candidacy of an individual for Congress. Others would say it's particularly peculiar to display these signs on Montclair High School property given that the High School is actually located in the 10th Congressional District," Michael Byrne, the club's president, wrote in the letter. "I would concur with both groups. However, if the signs are to remain, I trust you will at least agree that Montclair High School should take care to offer all candidates for Congress in both congressional districts the same opportunity to display their signs."
The club had also reached out to the district with concerns about Sherrill’s planned appearance at the school.