(A) The department of transportation may contract to sell commercial advertising space within or on the outside surfaces of any building located within a roadside rest area under its jurisdiction in exchange for cash payment. Money the department receives under this section shall be deposited in the state treasury to the credit of the roadside rest area improvement fund, which is hereby created. The department shall use the money in the fund only to improve roadside rest areas in accordance with section 5529.06 of the Revised Code.
(B) Advertising placed under this section shall comply with all of the following:
(1) It shall not be libelous or obscene and shall not promote any illegal product or service.
(2) It shall not promote illegal discrimination on the basis of the race, religion, national origin, handicap, age, or ancestry of any person.
(3) It shall not support or oppose any candidate for political office or any political cause, issue, or organization.
(4) It shall comply with any controlling federal or state regulations or restrictions.
(5) To the extent physically and technically practical, it shall state that the advertisement is a paid commercial advertisement and that the state does not endorse the product or service promoted by the advertisement or make any representation about the accuracy of the advertisement or the quality or performance of the product or service promoted by the advertisement.
(6) It shall conform to all applicable rules adopted by the director of transportation under division (E) of this section.
(C) Contracts entered into under this section shall be awarded only to the qualified bidder who submits the highest responsive bid or according to uniformly applied rate classes.
(D) No person, except an advertiser alleging a breach of contract or the improper awarding of a contract, has a cause of action against the state with respect to any contract or advertising authorized by this section. Under no circumstances is the state liable for consequential or noneconomic damages with respect to any contract or advertising authorized under this section.
(E) The director, in accordance with Chapter 119. of the Revised Code, shall adopt rules to implement this section. The rules shall be consistent with the policy of protecting the safety of the traveling public and consistent with the national policy governing the use and control of such roadside rest areas. The rules shall regulate the awarding of contracts and may regulate the content, display, and other aspects of the commercial advertising authorized by this section.
Effective Date: 09-26-2003