Ice cream shop owner may be going down rocky road with Trump sign

Posted: Updated:

A Port Jefferson ice cream shop is caught up in a not-so-sweet controversy over a sign.

Roger Rutherford, the manager of the ice cream shop in Port Jefferson Village, says the owner of the building put up the sign last Tuesday in support of President Donald Trump during the impeachment process.

However, village officials say the sign is too big and violates village code.

“It's not necessarily what the sign says. It's basically the size and substance of the banner itself. It's an illegal sign,” says Village Mayor Margot Garant.

RELATED: Tens of thousands of people arrive in Wildwood for President Trump rally

This is not the first time the owner, George Wallace, who would not speak to News 12, has been ordered to take down a large Trump sign. Back in 2017, the Village of Port Jeff ordered Wallace twice to take down Trump banners because the signs violated code.

Wallace cooperated at the time.

Rutherford, who spoke on behalf of the owner, says the sign will stay up this time.

“This is Wallace's free speech right. I think the village is treading on very thin lines there, forcing Mr. Wallace to take his sign down when he's executing his free speech right,” Rutherford says.

PHOTOS: Trump rally in Wildwood, NJ:

 

Rutherford supports the sign and claims most of his customers do as well.

“We've had people coming in, come in through the lot all day long, taking pictures, showing support,” Rutherford says.

Village officials say Wallace has until the end of the day Wednesday to take the sign down or face fines. If the sign is not removed, the village says the owner of the building could face fines of up to $2,000 a day.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."