Members of Simple Truth Church in Nevada County, near Sacramento painted the simple message on a rundown 20-food-by-8-foot billboard on Highway 49.
"Nevada County is a very patriotic county, they love our troops," the Rev. Jeff Alaways told KTXL-TV, Sacramento.
County officials said they took no umbrage with the patriotic message -- but noted they had told church leaders they would not be allowed to paint the sign without applying for a sign permit first.
When church leaders went ahead with the plan, Nevada County Planning Director Brian Foss sent Alaways a letter instructing him to take down the billboard until the group had applied for and obtained a permit.
"We look forward to meeting with the church and getting everything legalized," Foss said, noting it takes about 30 days for the permit process to be completed.
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