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By Yogesh Khandelwal and Dan Liggett
Advertising billboards, for better or worse, are part of the American landscape. Commonly seen from our many miles of interstates and national highways, billboards are considered an essential marketing tool of business. Some motorists feel they provide useful information, while others regard them as eyesores or unnecessary distractions from the nation’s natural beauty.
As usage and popularity of billboards began to escalate in the 1950s, the federal government took initial steps toward regulation. Signed into law by President Dwight Eisenhower, the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956, commonly known as the “Bonus Program,” was an incentive for states to establish control of ODA within 660 feet of the right of way along interstates. States that did so received an additional one half of one percent of their interstate construction costs.