City of Erie, PA
Erie County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Ord. 43-2018, passed 11-21-2018]
As used herein, the following words and terms shall have the following meanings:
(a) 
PANHANDLING — Any personal solicitation made in a public place for an immediate donation of money or any other item of value. This definition applies equally to all persons requesting donations, whether the donation is intended to be used for the panhandler's personal use or on behalf of a religious group or community service organization or for any other reason. Panhandling shall include, but not be limited to, using the spoken, written or printed word, bodily gestures, signs, music, singing or other street performance with the purpose of obtaining an immediate donation of money or other thing of value. Panhandling shall also include exchanges in which the person being solicited receives an item or thing of little or no monetary value in exchange for a donation, under circumstances where a reasonable person would understand that the transaction is in substance a donation. Panhandling does not include passively standing or sitting with a sign or other indication that one is seeking donations, without addressing any solicitation to any specific person other than in response to an inquiry by that person.
(b) 
PANHANDLING IN AN AGGRESSIVE MANNER —
(1) 
Following behind, ahead or alongside a person for more than 25 feet either before, during or after panhandling if that conduct is intended or is likely to cause a reasonable person to fear bodily harm to oneself or to another or damage to or loss of property or otherwise be intimidated into giving money or other thing of value;
(2) 
Continuing to panhandle from a person after that person has given a negative response to such soliciting or walked away from the panhandler;
(3) 
Intentionally touching or causing physical contact with the solicited person without such person's consent in the course of panhandling; or
(4) 
Using profane or abusive language or speaking in an unreasonably loud volume, either during panhandling or following a refusal to make a donation, or making any statement or gestures toward the subject of the panhandling which would cause a reasonable person to be fearful or feel compelled; or
(5) 
Directing violent or threatening gestures toward the subject of the panhandling.
(c) 
PUBLIC PLACE — An area open to use by the general public, including, but not limited to alleys, bridges, buildings, driveways, parking lots, parks, plazas, sidewalks, and streets open to the general public, and the doorways and entrances to buildings and dwellings, and the grounds enclosing them.
(d) 
HINDRANCE TO TRAFFIC —
(1) 
Panhandling in any manner which serves to intentionally block, obstruct, or interfere with orderly flow of either vehicles or pedestrians is prohibited.
(2) 
Panhandling in any manner which intentionally and unreasonably causes a pedestrian or vehicle operator to take evasive action to avoid physical contact is prohibited.
(3) 
Panhandling in any manner that violates traffic regulations for pedestrians or vehicles.
[Ord. 43-2018, passed 11-21-2018]
No person shall engage in an act of panhandling:
(a) 
Which causes a hindrance to traffic, as defined in Section 743.01.
(b) 
In an aggressive manner, as defined in Section 743.01.
[Ord. 43-2018, passed 11-21-2018]
(a) 
Any person violating any provision of this article shall, upon conviction thereof in a summary proceeding, be sentenced for each violation to pay a fine of not more than $600 and cost of prosecution and, in default of the payment of such fine and cost, to undergo imprisonment for not more than 30 days;
(b) 
In addition to any other remedy provided in this article, the City may institute proceedings to restrain any violation of, or to require compliance with, this article.