Damaging, removing campaign signs is illegal in Wisconsin

Officials are reminding the public as the August and November elections approach.

A supporter holds up a sign during republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence's campaign stop at the Duluth International Airport in Duluth in 2016. (File / News Tribune)

With the partisan primary set for Aug. 11 and the general election Nov. 3, missing or damaged political signs are starting to be reported in Douglas County.

County Clerk Susan Sandvick issued a reminder to the public that destroying political candidate signs is illegal.

Damage to campaign signs typically occurs with the presidential election cycle, Sandvick said.

Under Wisconsin law, no person may deface, destroy or remove any legally placed election campaign sign, or alter the information printed on it. Doing so can result in a fine of $100 per sign.

“Political signs are personal property,” Sandvick said. “It’s simply not right to destroy political signs for whatever reason.”


Political signs placed on public property or within a highway right-of-way may be removed by local authorities.

People who have had a sign damaged or stolen can report it to law enforcement or the county clerk’s office. Contact Sandvick at 715-395-1568 with any questions about the statute.

“Douglas County embraces an environment of a positive campaign season and voting experience, with as little disruption as possible,” Sandvick said, asking the public to respect all aspects of the electoral process.

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