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Theyre scattered along highways, back roads and city streets. Some elaborate, others unassuming, a few sunk in concrete.
All are intended to honor loved ones killed in traffic accidents. Unfortunately, theyre almost always illegally placed on government-owned land.
Now, legislation intended to regulate roadside memorials is out of committee and awaiting action by the state House.
The bill -- introduced by Rep. Neal Nitz of Berrien County -- would essentially ban the homemade memorials starting in October 2007. Instead, the only memorials allowed will be uniform signs put up by the Michigan Department of Transportation at the familys written request.
Supporters say the bill would limit driver distractions and give the state authority to remove unapproved memorials.
Opponents believe it could be offensive to memorialize someone, especially if others died as a result of the accident. And they question whether it is the states place to officially approve them.
Source: Kyla King, State lawmakers ponder ban on roadside memorials, Grand Rapids Press, September 18, 2005, via MLive.
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