[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Ellicott 9-6-1972 as L.L. No. 1-1972. Section 98-13 amended at time of adoption of Code; see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I. Other amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter is enacted for the purpose of regulating itinerant merchandising and soliciting in order that the peace, health, safety, welfare and good order of the town and its inhabitants shall not be endangered or unduly disturbed.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ESTABLISHED PLACE OF BUSINESS
- A permanent building, store or depository in which or where the person transacts business and deals in the goods, wares or commodities he peddles, vends or solicits in the ordinary and regular course of business.
- The selling, bartering or trading, or offering to sell, barter or trade, any goods, wares, commodities or services.
- PEDDLER, VENDOR AND SOLICITOR
- Includes, unless otherwise herein provided, any person who engages in merchandising any goods, wares, commodities, books, periodicals or services or who solicits contributions of goods or moneys by going from house to house or from place of business to place of business or in any public street or public place or by temporarily occupying a room, building or other premises therefor.
- Includes any individual, firm, partnership, corporation, unincorporated association and principal or agent thereof.
- TEMPORARY OCCUPANCY
- A store, room, building, tent, enclosure or structure of any kind intended to be occupied for the period of time necessary to peddle, vend or solicit the merchandise or products therein housed initially, without the intent to replenish or restock such goods, wares and merchandise sold therein. In all prosecutions for violation of this chapter, the intent of the defendant to conduct an established place of business shall be a material fact, and the burden of proving such intent shall be upon the defendant in such prosecution.
It shall be unlawful for any person within the jurisdiction of this chapter to act as a peddler, vendor or solicitor, as herein defined, without first having obtained and paid for, and having in force and effect, a license therefor.
The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to the following:
An honorably discharged soldier, sailor or marine who is crippled as a result of injuries received while in the naval or military service of the United States, but no such person shall engage in any of the occupations specified in this chapter without first having been issued a license by the Town Clerk, which shall be issued without fee.
Any person soliciting at the express invitation of the person solicited or serving an established customer.
A wholesaler selling articles to dealers or merchants who have an established place of business within the town.
A truck gardener or farmer who himself or through his employees vends, sells or disposes of products of his own farm or garden.
A child regularly attending any public or parochial or private school located within the Town of Ellicott or a representative of any established church maintaining a place of worship within the town or a member of a veterans organization, provided that such organization has and maintains a chapter, post, lodge, camp or other group within the Town of Ellicott, or a member of a fraternal organization or civic group maintaining a chapter or local organization within the Town of Ellicott; and further provided that any person coming within the provisions of this exemption shall only peddle, vend or solicit in connection with an authorized activity of the organization of which they are a member or of the school which they attend.
Auction sales held pursuant to law by a sheriff or other officer authorized by law to conduct such sale.
This chapter shall not apply so as to interfere unlawfully with interstate commerce.
Every applicant for a license is required to submit to the Town Clerk a written application supplying, under oath, the following information:
The name of the applicant.
His permanent home residence.
The name and address of the firm represented, if any.
The length of time for which the license is required.
A description of the goods, wares or commodities to be offered for sale, together with a true invoice of their amount, quality and value.
All felonies or misdemeanors with which the applicant has been charged and the disposition of each such charge.
To the application must be appended a letter of authorization from the firm which the applicant purports to represent.
If the application has one or more employees who will work in the town, the same information must be supplied as to each employee.
Upon receipt of the application and of the license fee and if reasonably satisfied with the applicant's qualifications, the Town Clerk shall issue a license to the applicant specifying the particular business authorized and the location wherein it may be conducted. This license shall be nontransferable and shall be in the continuous possession of the licensee while engaged in the business licensed. The license shall be produced upon the demand of any town official, prospective buyer, police officer or sheriff.
The Town Clerk shall keep a record of the application, of the determinations thereon and of all licenses issued in accordance with this chapter. The record shall contain the name and residence of the person licensed, the location of the business, the amount of the license fee paid and the date of revocation of all licenses revoked.
All licenses hereunder shall expire on the first day of January following the date of issuance thereof.
The fees for all licenses are hereby fixed as follows: $25 per year or $5 per day or fraction thereof for the applicant, and $10 per year or $1 per day or fraction thereof for each employee of said applicant.
A licensed peddler, vendor or solicitor shall:
Not willfully misstate the quantity or quality of any article offered for sale.
Not willfully offer for sale any article of an unwholesome or defective nature.
Not call attention to his goods by blowing a horn, by ringing a bell other than a house doorbell, by shouting or crying out or by any loud or unusual noise.
Not frequent any street in an exclusive nature so as to cause a private or public nuisance.
Keep the vehicle and/or receptacles used by him in the furtherance of his licensed business in a sound, clean and sanitary condition.
Keep his edible articles offered for sale well protected from dirt, dust and insects.
A licensed peddler, solicitor or vendor shall not:
Stand or permit the vehicle used by him to stand in one place in any public place or street for more than 10 minutes, nor in front of any premises for any time if the owner or the lessee of the ground objects.
Sell confectionary or ice cream within 250 feet of any school between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on school days.
Licenses issued under provisions of this chapter may be revoked by the Town Clerk of the Town of Ellicott after notice and hearing for any of the following causes:
Fraud, misrepresentation or false statement contained in the application for license.
Fraud, misrepresentation or false statement made in the course of carrying on his business as peddler, vendor or solicitor.
Any violation of this chapter.
Conviction of any crime or misdemeanor involving moral turpitude.
Conducting the business of peddling in an unlawful manner or in such a manner as to constitute a breach of the peace or as to constitute a menace to the health, safety or general welfare of the public.
Notice of the hearing for revocation of a license shall be given in writing, setting forth specifically the grounds of complaint and the time and place of hearing. Such notice shall be mailed, postage prepaid, to the licensee at his last known address at least five days prior to the date set for hearing.
The Town Clerk, upon receiving information giving him reasonable cause to believe that the holder of any license issued hereunder has violated any provisions of this chapter or has been convicted of any violation referred to in this section or has been indicted or charged with or for any crime or offense or has been convicted of any crime or offense may forthwith temporarily suspend such license until a hearing is held by him, as provided herein, and the Town Clerk shall have issued his determination thereon.
If the licensee has one or more employees, the revocation hereunder shall apply to the licensee and all employees if either he or any one or more of his employees are determined to be in violation of this chapter.
Any person aggrieved by the action of the Town Clerk in the denial of an application for a license, as provided in this chapter, or in the decision of the Town Clerk with reference to the revocation of a license, as provided in this chapter, shall have the right to appeal to the Town Board of the Town of Ellicott. Such appeal shall be taken by filing, within 14 days after notice of the action complained of has been mailed to such person's last known address, a written statement setting forth fully the grounds for the appeal. The Town Board shall set a time and place for a hearing on such appeal, and notice of such hearing shall be mailed to the applicant at his last known address at least five days prior to the date set for the hearing. The decision and order of the Town Board on such appeal shall be final and conclusive.
Any person who shall act as a peddler, vendor or solicitor, as herein defined, without a license or who shall violate any of the provisions of this chapter or who shall continue to act as peddler, vendor or solicitor subsequent to the revocation of his license shall be punishable by a maximum fine of $250 or by imprisonment for not more than 15 days, or both. In addition, such person shall incur a civil penalty of $50 for each day on which such violation continues.