In May of 2017, the City enacted an ordinance that prohibits the delivery of written materials by throwing items from vehicles, making it a form of littering. In April 2018, after a Federal Court of Appeals upheld a similar law in the State of Kentucky, City Council passed an ordinance that further tightens the requirements for the delivery of unsolicited written materials to homes in Upper Arlington.
Codified Ordinances § 537.06, specifies where on a property unsolicited written materials such as advertising packets must be delivered:
- On a porch near the door
- Securely attached to the front door
- Through a mail slot in the door, if applicable
- Between the exterior front door and interior front door
- Where permitted, in a distribution box located on or adjacent to the premises
- Securely attached to a hook or within some other receptacle used for the delivery of non-U.S. Mail packages or materials
- Personally to the owner, occupant and/or lessee of the premises
The ordinance places liability on the businesses behind the distribution, allowing the City to target the source of the problem rather than just the individual employees making the deliveries. In addition, the resident maintains the right to restrict entry to the premises if he or she so desires.
Violation of this law is considered an unclassified misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of $250 per violation. Businesses responsible for delivery persons who are not following the City’s rules can also be held liable for littering.
If you experience a violation in the delivery of unsolicited materials, call the Police Division at 614-459-2800. An officer will come to the residence to take a report and see first-hand where the material was dropped.
April 2019 Update
Representatives from the Columbus Dispatch—which produces and distributes a weekly advertising packet known as The Bag—have responded to Upper Arlington’s law by working to be more responsive to residents when an issue arises. They have recently added an online reporting form that enables residents to manage their preferences for The Bag. You can check if you have a delivery complaint and provide specific information relative to their issue and indicate if you no longer want to receive delivery of The Bag.
If you are experiencing an issue with delivery, when you complete and submit this form please allow a few weeks so that your request can be logged into their mapping/delivery system and then passed on to the team responsible for coordinating and making deliveries in your neighborhood. If the problem persists, please call 1-888-837-4342 to speak with a Dispatch representative.