[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Middlesex 10-20-2010 by Ord. No. 118.. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: This chapter also repealed former Ch. 120, Peddling and Soliciting, adopted 9-21-2005 by Ord. No. 104.
The following words shall be construed to have the meanings set forth below; and, throughout this chapter, the singular shall include the plural, and the masculine gender shall include the feminine and neuter:
- The practice of going from dwelling unit to dwelling unit to:
- A. Conduct surveys for research purposes (other than those conducted by an agency of the state or federal government);
- B. To make analyses, to take opinion polls, to compile rating data;
- C. To advance or advocate religious, political causes, other issues of public concern, and proselytizing or seeking contributions with regard thereto; and
- D. To conduct any similar work which, by its nature, involves door-to-door to place-to-place activity, including distribution of circulars.
- MERCHANDISE OR SERVICES
- Any goods or services, including, but not limited to, magazines, periodicals, books, orders or contracts for services, home improvements or alterations.
- Any solicitor or peddler required to apply for a registration certificate under this chapter and shall include all agents and employees of the solicitor.
- SOLICIT OR PEDDLING
- The practice of going from dwelling unit to dwelling unit advertising, promoting, selling, causing to be sold, offering for sale or taking orders for present or future delivery of merchandise or services. Solicit, or peddling does not include a series of licensed entries on private property (e.g., milkman making normal deliveries) or any activity within the definition of "canvass" set forth above.
- The municipal government or the land within the geographical boundaries of Middlesex Township, Butler County, Pennsylvania, depending upon the context.
No person shall solicit or peddle in the Township without first having obtained a permit from the Township Manager, or his or her delegate. A permit or registration for individuals engaging in canvassing shall not be required.
Each person desiring to engage in soliciting or peddling shall first make application to the Township one week prior to engaging in such soliciting or peddling. Such application shall be provided by the Township and shall contain the following information verified by oath or affirmation for each applicant: what he/she desires to solicit for; the days, dates of the registrant's soliciting or peddling; his/her name, home address, a statement as to whether he/she has been convicted of a criminal offense, and, if so, the date of conviction and disposition; the make, model, year, color, and registration of the vehicle, if any, he/she will use; a copy of a current driver's license. Signature denotes authorization to conduct a criminal history inquiry. The Township will conduct a criminal history background check based on information received and following that, if all information is in order, will issue to the applicant a permit. Such permit may not be transferred from one person to another.
The following fees will be charged for the issuance of a permit, and will accompany the registrant's solicitor's identification badge and a copy of this chapter:
Every person engaged in soliciting or peddling within the confines of the Township shall, in the conduct of his or her activities, comply with the following standards of conduct:
The principal registrant shall carry the permit at all times when in the Township and shall exhibit it to any Township citizen or resident or Township official upon request.
Every person must prominently display on his/her outermost garment an identification badge, which signifies authorization to solicit or peddle within the Township for a specified period.
Every person shall not allow any other individual to have possession of his identification card and shall immediately report its loss to the Township. He shall not cause or permit his identification card to be altered or defaced in any way.
Every person engaged in canvassing, soliciting or peddling within the confines of the Township shall, in the conduct of his or her activities, comply with the following (or additional, as applied to solicitors and peddlers) standards of conduct:
All canvassers, solicitors or peddlers shall respect and comply with any "No Solicitation" or "No Soliciting" sign erected or displayed on private property within the Township. Individuals and/or organizations which fail to comply with such signs may be subject to civil and/or criminal trespass actions.
All canvassers, solicitors or peddlers shall not enter or attempt to enter any dwelling without the invitation or permission of the occupant and shall immediately leave any premises upon request of the occupant.
Every person shall conduct himself/herself at all times in an orderly and lawful manner.
In the event an application for a permit to solicit or peddle is disapproved by the Township Manager or delegate, the applicant may, within five days of the denial, appeal the decision to the Township Board of Supervisors which shall set a time and place for a hearing. This hearing shall be held within 30 days after appeal is taken by applicant, at which hearing the applicant will be given the opportunity to present reasons why the permit should be issued. The decision of the Township Board of Supervisors shall be made within 10 days of the appeal hearing, and shall be final.
Hours. No person shall canvass, solicit or peddle before 9:00 a.m. or after 8:00 p.m., Monday through Sunday. This restriction shall apply both to all persons to whom a permit has been issued and to those engaged in canvassing who are not required to obtain a permit.
List. No person shall solicit or peddle in the Township without first obtaining from the Township Manager or his or her delegate a list of all residences and dwelling units in the Township where the owner/occupant of the residence or dwelling unit has notified the Township in writing that they do not wish to be visited on his/her premises at any time by any person performing any canvassing and/or soliciting or peddling activity. Any such written notice from an owner/occupant to the Township may be revoked in writing at any time by such owner/occupant. The list shall also be made available to canvassers to obtain at the option of the canvasser(s).
The Township Manager may revoke the permit 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/her business as solicitor, peddler, or transient merchant or itinerant vendor;
Any violation of this chapter;
Conviction of any crime involving moral turpitude; or
Conducting his/her business in an unlawful manner or in such a manner as to constitute a menace to the health, safety or general welfare of the general public.
The terms of this chapter shall not apply to:
Persons selling personal property at wholesale to dealers in such articles, and the provisions of this chapter shall not apply to the acts of merchants or their employees in delivering goods in the regular course of business, nor shall the terms of this chapter be held to include or apply to any farmer or truck gardener who shall vend, sell or dispose of or offer to sell, vend or dispose of the products of the farms or garden occupied and cultivated by him; nor shall it apply to any manufacturer or producer in the sale of bread, bakery or dairy products, meat and meat products or milk or milk products; nor shall it apply to any person who is delivering gasoline, kerosene or other heating and/or cooking fuels to a residence. Nothing contained in this chapter shall be held to prohibit any sale required by statute or by order of any court, or to prevent any person conducting a bona fide auction sale pursuant to law.
In addition, this chapter shall not apply to boys or girls 19 years of age or younger who take orders for and deliver newspapers, greeting cards, candy and the like, or who represent the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts or similar organizations and take orders for and deliver cookies and the like, or who are members of a school, church or other charitable or civic organization.
Any person who works for an organization which has been registered with the Pennsylvania Department of State, as required by Act No. 337, approved August 9, 1963, known as the "Solicitation of Charitable Funds Act," 10 P.S. § 160-1 et seq., shall not have to register with the Township, but such organization shall cause notice to be given to the Township that such person will be soliciting in the Township; any such person shall carry an appropriate identification card issued by the organization for which he or she works.
Editor's Note: The Solicitation of Charitable Funds Act was repealed by Act of April 30, 1986, P.L. 107, No. 36. See now the Solicitation of Funds for Charitable Purposes Act, 10 P.S. § 162.1 et seq.
Persons who are acting as representatives of accredited war veterans organizations.
Civil enforcement. The Township may commence a civil proceeding before a District Judge or an action in equity before the Court of Common Pleas. Any person who shall violate any provision of this chapter shall, for each and every such violation, pay a penalty of not less than $100 or no more than the maximum penalty of $600 per violation as permitted by Section 1601(c.1)(1) of the Second Class Township Code, 53 P.S. § 66601(c.1)(1), as may be amended, following adjudication by a District Judge or Judge of the Court of Common Pleas, plus court costs and reasonable attorney fees incurred by the Township. Each day during which any person violates any provision of this chapter shall constitute a separate offense.
Criminal enforcement. The Township may file and commence a summary offense proceeding. Any person who shall violate any provision of this chapter shall, for each and every such violation, be sentenced to pay a fine of not less than $100 or no more than the maximum penalty of $1,000 per violation as permitted by Section 1601(c.1)(2) of the Second Class Township Code, 53 P.S. § 66601(c.1)(2), as may be amended, plus costs of prosecution, following adjudication and conviction by a District Judge or Judge of the Court of Common Pleas. Each day during which any person violates any provision of this chapter shall constitute a separate offense.