Missouri City businesses may soon be able to promote their storefronts in new ways.

City Council unanimously passed an ordinance to relax code enforcement for certain sign regulations on the first of two necessary votes during the March 1 City Council meeting.

Council Member Jeffrey Boney requested the city consider this action in order to help small businesses in the community who are still affected by the economic downturn caused by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

During the Feb. 15 City Council meeting when this item was first discussed, Boney said he had heard from several businesses in his district and throughout the city who had received visits from code enforcement for putting up flags and additional signage that violate the city’s policy.

“I wanted to bring before the body an opportunity for us to consider on a temporary basis having a moratorium in place for a few months on our sign regulation ordinances to ensure that small businesses are able to operate and promote and market their businesses in a way that does not negatively impact the city, but helps them in the short term,” Boney said.

Under the proposed changes, businesses would be able to post banner signs on their store’s exterior or the business's frontage for the duration of the relaxed enforcement period. Additionally, feather flag signs—which are currently not permitted at all—would be allowed in accordance with other sign requirements, according to city documents. While businesses will still be subject to all other sign provisions including size, number and location rules, a permit will not be required for these temporary signs.

The relaxed rules would be in place for six months. City Council will vote to give final approval on the ordnance at an upcoming meeting.