Walton County, Florida, is fining a citizen $50 for every day he hangs three-story tall “Let’s Go Brandon” and “Trump Won” signs from his home in Seagrove Beach, WMBB reported.
“I’m here on the beach, and I got a lot of traffic, and people needed to see what I believe in,” Peavy said. “That’s free speech, and I wanted everyone to know that I’m a Republican and I’m supporting Donald Trump.”https://t.co/R00akYIX77
— WBTW News13 (@WBTWNews13) November 2, 2021
Homeowner Marvin Peavy said the county’s fines violate his free speech rights.
Peavy said he will let the flags hang as long as he can. Trump supporters across the country have said they will help him cover the cost of the fines, and one Louisiana woman reportedly offered to pay the fines for two years at a cost of $36,500.
WBTW News13 photographed the signs that hang from his home, which sits on State Road 30A along Florida’s panhandle coastline.
Walton County Code Enforcement decided at a hearing that Peavy’s signs do not comply with the county’s land development ordinances. Walton County Code Compliance official Michael Lynch said that the land development codes ensure that the coastline remains visually appealing.
The Walton County Republican Party as well as local Trump supporters are backing Peavy in his fight against the code that stifles his free speech rights.
“People admire people that stand up, and we have got to start standing up,” said Bill Fletcher, the chairman of the Walton County Republican Executive Committee. “[Peavy] is the epitome of somebody who will stand up for his First Amendment right.”
Trump supporters attended the code enforcement hearing to support Peavy and then gathered outside his home and waved Trump flags and signs.
“I had attended the code enforcement meeting when this was brought up, and I was quite shocked when they said they were going to fine him $50 a day for a banner that’s on his private property,” said Tabitha Howard, who sides with Peavy in the dispute.
The county let Peavy display a “Trump 2020” flag during the election season, but political flags or signs outside a specific time frame violate the county’s rules.
Peavy has another hearing on Nov. 17.