New York City Fines Cemetery Association $20,000 over ‘Sponsorship’ Banners

The Friends of Abandoned Cemeteries of Staten Island, a non-profit that cares for derelict graveyards, sold “sponsorship” banners (or signs) place near a number of abandoned cemeteries to raise money for fence repairs around the Lake Cemetery on Forest Avenue. Most of the abandoned cemeteries are located in residential areas.

This story is about laws in New York City but many other cities may have similar laws about placing signs with advertising in residential areas.

The banners — one advertised the Exit Exterminating company and featured pictures of cockroaches and other bugs — were not only in questionable taste, they ran afoul of New York City rules. The Department of Buildings issued violations for the outdoor ads, which are prohibited in the residential district. The city initially fined the Friends of Abandoned Cemeteries of Staten Island $50,000 but later reduced the fine to $20,000.

“We had no idea it was illegal,” said Lynn Rogers, the executive director of the Friends group.

Sadly, the Friends of Abandoned Cemeteries of Staten Island doesn’t have $20,000 in its treasury and probably will be forced to close down and file for bankruptcy.

You can read more in an article in New York Post at:


Off topic. I think you’ve switched to TinuUrl for your URL shortener. Any new guidance for us?


No. I’m just experimenting to see which service works best.


David Paul Davenport February 27, 2019 at 12:04 pm

Very sad. People who are trying to do the right thing are penalized, and the city that should be doing the upkeep continues to not do the maintenance of cemeteries, a task that is at the core of why government exists.


Think it is time for the City to wake up and realize what the non profit is doing for the good of the city and cancel all of the amounts they owe. One would think the local city council would get into the act and do something or else the Mayor should step to the plate and get it fixed.


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