A three-judge panel ruled that Clear Channel and CBS should not have been allowed to convert their existing billboards to electronic formats when existing laws outlawed such changes. "We do not see how the language could be plainer," the ruling states. From the LAT:
CBS and Clear Channel sued the city nearly a decade ago, seeking to block implementation of an ordinance banning the installation of new billboards except in special sign districts. In 2006, the council backed a settlement with the two companies that allowed them to convert up to 840 existing billboards to electronic formats. Summit Outdoor, a smaller sign company, went to court to invalidate the agreement, calling it a sweetheart deal. A judge sided with Summit, calling the agreement "poison" and blocking the city from allowing new digital signs to go up. But he refused to order the removal of the 100 or so billboards that had already been converted to digital formats under the 2006 settlement.