[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Board of Trustees of the Township of Lawrence 4-12-2018 (Ord. No. 27 of the 2005 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
An ordinance to preserve the peace and to protect the public health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Lawrence Township, Van Buren County, Michigan, by regulating solicitors, transient merchants, door-to-door salespersons, roadside stands, street vendors and other temporary businesses.
This chapter shall be known and cited as the "Lawrence Township Peddlers and Solicitors Ordinance."
It is the purpose of this chapter to prevent, reduce, and eliminate the hazards and nuisances created by individuals selling goods or services outside in areas visible to the public.
For the purpose of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.
- PEDDLER AND SOLICITOR
- Any person who sells or offers for sale any goods (except food and produce), products, wares, merchandise or services, by traveling to more than one address in the Township or selling from roads and rights-of-way within the Township.
- Collectively the businesses of a seller.
- For purposes of this chapter, "seller" collectively refers to peddlers, solicitors, temporary business, and yard sales.
- TEMPORARY BUSINESSES
- Any person who sells or offers for sale any goods (except food and produce), products, wares, merchandise or services inside a permanent structure, unless said sales or offers are pursuant to a business in compliance with Township zoning requirements and other applicable law.
- YARD SALES
- Any person who sells or offers for sale any goods (except food and produce), products, wares, merchandise or services, outside of a permanent structure unless said sales or offers are pursuant to a business in compliance with Township zoning requirements and other applicable law.
Peddlers and solicitors, temporary businesses and yard sales shall not operate within the Township without first obtaining a permit in compliance with the provisions of this chapter.
These restrictions and definitions apply regardless to the zoning district. For example, a sale of machine parts outside a permanent structure in a commercial zoning district is a yard sale and must comply with the provisions of this chapter unless in compliance with Chapter 1, Zoning, and other ordinances.
Persons required to obtain a license shall apply for it at the office of the Township Clerk. Each individual peddler, solicitor, temporary business, or yard sale seller will apply for a permit and provide a valid driver's license or state ID.
A permit fee, set by the Township Board, shall be paid in full prior to issuance of the permit.
A permit is not required for an individual selling on behalf of a nonprofit, religious organization, locally recognizable charitable organization, or other organization approved by the Township Board. The seller must provide the name, address, and phone number of the organization for the exemption to apply. The seller must not receive a portion of the proceeds of any sales.
The Township Clerk shall approve or deny all applications for permits.
Persons delinquent on property taxes, with unpaid civil costs or fines, or with a previous violation of an ordinance in the last five years may not obtain a permit;
No person may obtain more than five permits in a calendar year;
No real property or vehicle within the Township may be used in conjunction with a sale more than five times per year;
The person whose permit has been denied shall have the right to appeal to the Township Board within seven days of the denial. The Township Board shall have the right to waive the denial of the permit and any requirements herein.
All permits shall be issued with a start and end date not to exceed three calendar days.
All goods, products, wares, merchandise, services, advertisements thereof, or equipment or furniture used in conjunction with any sales, shall be stored inside of a permanent structure or completely enclosed vehicle from 9:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m., and no sales may occur during that period.
Any person issued a permit under this chapter shall display the same upon demand of any individual, whether Township official, citizen of the Township, or other individual.
The terms of this chapter shall in no manner alter the interpretation or requirements of any other chapter of the Code of the Township of Lawrence, whether the person is licensed or exempt under this chapter, shall comply with all applicable provisions of the Township's Zoning, Sign and Building Codes. The Township Clerk may require evidence of compliance with the codes prior to or after issuing a permit.
All vehicles, persons, structures, furniture, equipment, goods, products, advertisements, and anything else used in conjunction or associated with a sale must not obstruct the free flow of traffic or pedestrians, whether directly or indirectly, including by attracting individuals to the sale location, and must move upon request of Township officials and agents. Sales are not to be in a loud voice or use any noisemaking device.
The Township Clerk may place such reasonable restrictions upon the location, hours, provisions for parking, ingress or egress or methods of operation of any peddler, solicitor, temporary business, or yard sale permit issued herein deemed necessary to protect the general public health, safety or welfare. The restrictions may be imposed, modified or withdrawn at the time of licensure or any point thereafter.
Any person found to have violated this chapter by a court of competent jurisdiction is responsible for a municipal civil infraction under Chapter 25, Municipal Civil Infractions, of the Code of the Township of Lawrence.