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Tuesday, November 9, 2004



Ruling due on aerial
advertising ban

Chief U.S. District Judge David Ezra is to rule today whether the city's ban on aerial advertising is constitutional.

The Center for Bio-Ethical Reform and its executive director, Gregg Cunningham, sued the city in April 2003, asking that the city be prevented from enforcing the ordinance because it violates the U.S. Constitution's protection of free speech.

Earlier, it had asked the city to repeal its ban because it wants to use aircraft to tow large, graphic banners depicting first-term aborted fetuses.

The anti-abortion organization contends the banners are the most effective way to educate as many people as possible about abortions. It is already doing so in 24 other states.

The city bans aerial advertising based on local laws prohibiting billboard advertising. The ordinance was in response to a helicopter that took to Honolulu skies with aerial advertising. Skysign International Inc., an advertising company that uses helicopters, unsuccessfully challenged the city ordinance in the late 1990s.

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