LAKELAND, TN (abc24.com) - Put the wrong sign in your yard and investigators from the District Attorney's Office could show up at your door. It's happening in Lakeland, where voters supporting the city creating its own school system are being told their yard signs are illegal.
Small yard signs are causing a big problem for Lakeland residents. The issue is the signs that urge people to vote 'yes' for a school system don't disclose who paid for them, which is a possible violation of financial disclosure laws.
School supporters say they're not a political action committee, just a group of people who got together on Facebook.
Mayor Scott Carmichael got a visit from a state investigator about the sign in his yard. According to Carmichael, Lakeland officials checked with attorneys who say because the signs support an issue, not a candidate, there's no need for disclosure.
"We think people have the right to express what they think and want, for or against," said Carmichael.
Jim Bomprezzi filed the complaint. His group is against the city creating its own schools and if you look closely at his signs, the fine print shows who paid for them.
A spokesperson for the District Attorney's Office says the "Yes Lakeland" people were told they have to follow state law. If not, they could be charged with a crime.
Truth is the grassroots group supporting Lakeland creating its own school has snowballed. People are donating money. More than 500 people have joined the cause, so it's not just a few parents on Facebook anymore.