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Any sign that does not conform to a provision of chapter 18.4.7 and has been in existence for more than five years is subject to the requirements of this section, as follows.

A. Alteration of Any Existing Nonconforming Sign. It is unlawful to alter any existing nonconforming sign. The sign must be brought into conformance with this ordinance upon any physical alteration. Acts of God or vandalism which damage these nonconforming signs shall be exempt from this section, if the cost of the repair is less than 50 percent of the cost of replacing the sign with a conforming sign. However, the signs must be restored to their original design and a Sign Permit is required prior to the repair work.

B. Land Use Actions Requiring Conformance. Any nonconforming sign used by a business, shopping center, or business complex must be brought into conformance prior to any expansion or change in use that requires a Site Design Review or Conditional Use Permit. All nonconforming signs must be brought into conformance with chapter 18.4.7, the same provisions as are required for new signs. No building permits for new construction may be issued until this provision is complied with.

C. Sign Variances. Variances can be granted to this section using the variance procedure of chapter 18.5.5 to alleviate unusual hardships or extraordinary circumstances that exist in bringing nonconforming signs into conformity.