[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Brentwood 3-2-1982 as Ch. XIII, Part 6, of the 1982 Code of Ordinances; amended in its entirety 1-22-2013 by Ord. No. 1212. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter shall be known as the "Borough of Brentwood Transient Retail Business, Panhandling, and Solicitation Ordinance."
It is the purpose of this chapter and the policy of the Borough of Brentwood, in order to protect and promote the public health, safety and welfare of its citizens, to establish the rights and obligations of those who wish to engage in legal temporary business or
Editor's Note: So in original.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- The Borough of Brentwood, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.
- Includes any person who goes from private house to house questioning persons for the purposes of obtaining information, data or opinions from such persons contacted for any issue of public interest, including political, religious, charitable or educational purposes, whether or not a donation from the resident(s) is sought from the canvasser.
- CHARITABLE ORGANIZATION
- An organization which has been granted an exemption by the United States Internal Revenue Service under § 501(c) or § 509(a) of the United States Internal Revenue Code and/or any person or organization who has complied with the provisions of the Pennsylvania Solicitation of Funds for Charitable Purposes Act, 10 P.S. § 162.1 et seq., as amended.
- LEGAL HOLIDAY
- Any holiday characterized by the suspension of business of the state or federal government, including, but not limited to, New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.
- (1) 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 approached 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.
- (2) Panhandling in an aggressive manner means:
- (a) Following behind, ahead or alongside a person for more than 50 feet either before, during or after soliciting 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;
- (b) Continuing to solicit from a person after that person has given a negative response to such soliciting or walked away from the solicitor;
- (c) Intentionally touching or causing physical contact with the solicited person without such person's consent;
- (d) Intentionally blocking or interfering with the safe or free passage of a person or vehicle being solicited by any means, including unreasonably causing a person or vehicle operator to take evasive action to avoid physical contact;
- (e) Using profane or abusive language, or speaking in an unreasonably loud volume, either during the solicitation or following a refusal to make a donation, or making any statement or gestures toward a solicited person which would cause a reasonable person to be fearful or feel compelled; or
- (f) Soliciting from a person while that person is waiting in line for entry to a building or for another purpose.
- Any natural person, partnership, association, corporation or other legal entity.
- PUBLIC PLACE
- Any place to which the public or a substantial group of persons has access, including but not limited to any street, highway, sidewalk, parking facility, plaza, transportation facility, school, place of amusement, park or playground, and any doorway, entrance, hallway, lobby, or other portion of any business establishment, apartment house or hotel not constituting a room or apartment designed for actual residences.
- Includes, but is not limited to, a person going:
- (1) From private house to house, conveying or transporting goods, wares or merchandise, or offering or exposing the same for sale or making sales or delivering articles, goods, wares or merchandise to purchasers.
- (2) From private house to house, soliciting or attempting to take orders from individuals for sale of goods, wares or merchandise, including magazines, books, periodicals or other personal property of any nature whatsoever, for future delivery or for services to be performed at that time or in the future, whether or not such individual has, carries or exposes for sale a sample of the subject of such order or whether or not he is collecting advance payments on such orders.
- (1) The term "transient retail business" includes the following:
- (a) Engaging in begging, panhandling, peddling, soliciting or taking orders, either by sample or otherwise, for any goods, wares or merchandise upon any street, alley, sidewalk or public ground or from house to house within the Borough of Brentwood.
- (b) Selling, soliciting or taking orders for any goods, wares or merchandise from a fixed location within the Borough on a temporary basis, which shall include but shall not be limited to such activities conducted at the time of special occasions or celebrations, for seasonal purposes or for or in advance of specific yearly or legal holidays.
- (c) The business conducted by any transient merchant, which term shall include any person who, temporarily and for a short time, hires, rents or obtains a definite place of business, whether a storeroom or a market stand or a private residence, for the sale of goods, wares, merchandise or to offer or expose the same for sale or for future delivery and sale. The terms "temporarily" and "short time" shall be construed as three months or less.
- (2) The term "transient retail business" shall not include:
- (a) The solicitation of funds for nonprofit charitable, religious or political organizations or any other activity with a predominantly charitable, religious or political purpose.
- (b) The solicitation of funds by school children through and including 12th grade for any school-approved activity or organization.
- (c) Sales made to dealers by commercial sales agents in the usual course of business, calling upon or dealing with manufacturers, wholesalers, distributors or retailers at their places of business.
- (d) Yard and/or garage sales as conducted by a Brentwood Borough resident from his place of residence.
The singular shall include the plural, the plural shall include the singular and the masculine shall include the feminine and the neuter.
No person shall engage as a solicitor in any transient retail business within the Borough of Brentwood without first registering with the Borough and having obtained from the Borough a license, for which a fee shall be charged. The amount of the fee shall be fixed from time to time by resolution of Council.
No license fee shall be charged for the following transient retail businesses:
To farmers selling their own produce.
For the sale of goods, wares and merchandise donated by the owners thereof or the proceeds of which sale are to be applied to any charitable or philanthropic purpose.
To any manufacturer or producer in the sale of bread and bakery products, meat and meat products or milk and milk products.
To the seeking or taking of orders by insurance agents or brokers licensed under the insurance laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
All persons exempted hereby from the payment of the license fee shall be required to register with the Borough Manager and obtain a license from the Borough without fee; provided, further, that any person dealing in one or more of the above-mentioned exempted categories and dealing with other goods, wares or merchandise not so exempted shall be subject to the payment of the license fee fixed by this section for his activities in connection with the sale of goods, wares and merchandise not in such exempted categories.
Every license issued under the provisions of this chapter shall be issued on an individual basis to persons engaging in such business; every individual shall obtain a separate license, issued to him in his name, and the license fee hereby imposed shall be applicable to every such individual license.
No person under the age of 18 shall be permitted to engage as a solicitor or in any transient retail business, except as provided below:
A license shall be obtained by a sponsoring person, company or organization for employment or engagement of any person under the age of 18 in soliciting or a transient retail business. Said sponsor must be at least 21 years of age.
A separate license must be acquired for each sponsored person under the age of 18.
The sponsor shall be responsible for supervising and controlling the conduct of the sponsored person or persons.
Every person desiring a license under this chapter shall first make application to the Borough for such license. If such person shall also be required to obtain a license from any state or county officer, he shall, when making such application, exhibit a valid license from such state or county officer. The applicant shall state thereof and present:
A photo identification document in the form of a state-issued driver's license, state-issued non-driver identification card, U.S. passport or passport card, U.S. military identification, U.S. permanent residency card, or photo identification from an accredited institution of higher learning. Photo identification must be valid for the dates during which the licensee will be engaged in solicitation or transient retail business;
The name and physical description of the applicant;
The complete permanent home and local address of the applicant and, in the case of transient merchants, the local address from which proposed sales will be made;
A brief description of the nature of the business and the goods to be sold or the organization on behalf of which funds will be solicited;
If employed, the name and address of the employer;
If a motor vehicle is to be used, a description of the vehicle, together with the motor vehicle registration number and the driver's license number;
The source of supply of the goods or property proposed to be sold, or orders taken for the sale thereof, and the proposed method of delivery;
The names of other communities in which the applicant has worked as a solicitor in the past 12 months, and if he was employed by a different transient retail business in those communities, the name of those companies shall also be stated;
Two recent photographs of the applicant, said photographs being at least two inches by three inches in dimension and clearly showing the applicant's head and shoulders;
Documentation of whether or not the applicant has been convicted of any felony, misdemeanor or crime involving moral turpitude, and a brief description of each such conviction;
Proof of sales tax permit issued by the State of Pennsylvania, or proof that the goods sold are not subject to such sales tax; and
The length of time, with beginning date and ending date, during which said business or solicitation is to be conducted in the Borough, said length of time not to exceed six consecutive days.
No application for a transient retail business license, including those exempt from the license fee under the conditions previously covered in this chapter, will be accepted less than three business days prior to the beginning date stated in the application.
Upon receipt of such application and the prescribed license fee, it shall be referred to the Chief of Police, who shall cause an investigation to be made as to all matters contained in the application to ensure the protection of the public health, safety and general welfare. The amount of the fee for said background investigation shall be fixed from time to lime by resolution of Council.
The Chief of Police shall endorse on such application his approval or disapproval for the issuance of the license and shall notify the Mayor of the same within three days, not including weekends or holidays, of receipt of such application.
The Mayor, if he shall find such application in order, shall issue the license required under this chapter.
As a condition prerequisite to issuance of said permit, and as continuing condition for use and maintenance of such permit, the Mayor may impose such conditions as he deems necessary to protect and preserve the health, safety, morals, general welfare, cleanliness, beauty and convenience of the Borough, the Borough residents and visitors to the Borough. Said conditions may include but are not limited to an obligation assumed, in writing, by the permittee and other interested persons or entities to reimburse the Borough for public safety cost incurred as a result of the use of the permit and to protect, defend, indemnify and hold the Borough officials, employees and representatives harmless from all claims, causes of action and loss arising from issuance and/or use of said permit.
Every license holder shall carry such license upon his person if engaged in transient retail business from house to house or upon any of the streets, alleys, sidewalks or public grounds or shall display such license at the location where he shall engage in such business if doing so at a fixed location. He shall exhibit such license, upon request, to all police officers, Borough officials and citizens or residents of the Borough.
No person shall:
Sell any product or type of product not mentioned in his license.
Hawk or cry his wares upon any of the streets, alleys, sidewalks or public grounds in the Borough of Brentwood.
When operating from a vehicle, stop or park such vehicle upon any of the streets or alleys in the Borough for longer than necessary in order to sell therefrom to persons residing in the immediate vicinity.
Park any vehicle upon any of the streets or alleys in the Borough for the purpose of sorting, rearranging or cleaning any of his goods, wares or merchandise or of disposing of any carton, wrapping material or of any stock or wares or foodstuffs which have become unsalable through handling, age or otherwise.
Engage in a transient retail business in an aggressive manner. As used in this section, "aggressive manner" means continuing the soliciting activity after the person has made a negative response, whether before or after being invited into a residence, by blocking the path of the person solicited, or by following or walking alongside with the person solicited, in a manner that is likely to cause a reasonable person to fear imminent bodily harm or the commission of a criminal act upon property in a person's possession or in or about the residence, or is intended to or is likely to intimidate the person into responding affirmatively to the peddling or soliciting activity.
Misrepresent the purpose of the solicitation. False or misleading representations include, but are not limited to, the following: stating that the solicitor is from out of town and stranded when such is not true; stating or suggesting falsely that the solicitor is either a present or former member of the armed services indicated; wearing or displaying an indication of physical disability, when the solicitor does not suffer the disability indicated; stating that the solicitor is homeless, when he or she is not.
Use at any time a license issued to any other person.
Permit any other person to use a license that was not issued to said other person.
Solicit at any private residence exhibiting a sign reading "no solicitors" or words having the same connotation.
Canvass at any private residence exhibiting a sign reading "no canvassers" or words having the same connotation.
No person may operate a transient retail business, panhandle or solicit in any of the following locations, unless located within a permanent storefront or residence:
On any public space, within 20 feet of any intersection or pedestrian crosswalk.
Within 20 feet of the entrance to or exit from any public toilet facility, which includes any temporary use site (port-a-toilet).
Within 20 feet of any bus stop or taxi stand.
Within 20 feet of an automatic teller machine (ATM), provided that when an automated teller machine is located within an automated teller machine facility, such distance shall be measured from the entrance or exit of the automated teller machine facility.
Within 20 feet of any fire hydrant.
Within any metered parking spaces owned by the Borough.
On the median of any divided roadway.
Within 200 feet of another vending location assigned to another vendor on a public sidewalk.
In any public transportation vehicle, or in any bus, or within 20 feet of any bus stop or taxi.
From any operator of a motor vehicle that is in traffic on a public street; provided, however, that this paragraph shall not apply to services rendered in connection with emergency repairs requested by the owner for passengers of such vehicle.
Within 20 feet of an entrance to or exit from any financial institution or check-cashing business without the consent of the owner of the property or another person legally in possession of such facilities.
Within 20 feet of the outside perimeter of any restaurant or other establishment serving food or alcoholic beverage for immediate consumption, outdoor cafe, licensed sidewalk food vendor, or store licensed for package sales of alcoholic beverages by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, unless expressly authorized by the owner, manager, or supervisor of the establishment.
The Mayor and the Brentwood police shall supervise the activities of all persons holding licenses under this chapter. The Borough Secretary shall keep a record of all licenses issued hereunder and shall make a report thereof each month to the Borough Council.
Transient retail business, canvassing and solicitation may be conducted at business properties in the Borough during all regular business hours and may be conducted in the Borough public streets and other public places from 9:00 a.m., prevailing time, to 8:00 p.m., provided that such business persons and/or solicitors, with canvassers excepted, obtain a license as required by this chapter and that such activities are conducted subject to all other provisions of this chapter.
The Mayor is hereby authorized to deny, suspend or revoke any license issued under this chapter when he deems such denial, suspension or revocation to be necessary to assist in the prevention of crime and/or necessary to protect the security of the homes of Borough residents from annoyance. In addition, the Mayor may deny, suspend or revoke any license issued under this chapter for violation of any provision of this chapter and/or for the giving of any false information upon any application for a license hereunder.
Notice of the denial, revocation or suspension of a license shall be given, in writing, setting forth specifically the grounds of complaint and the opportunity for a hearing. Such notice shall be given by the Mayor or Borough Secretary personally to the applicant or may be transmitted by certified mail, postage prepaid, to the applicant or licensee at his address given in said application.
Appeals from any denial, suspension or revocation may be made to the Borough Council, in writing, at any time within 10 days after such denial, suspension or revocation. Such notice of appeal shall state, in detail, the reasons why the applicant or permittee believes said denial, revocation or suspension is improper. No part of a license fee shall be refunded to any person whose license shall have been suspended or revoked.
Hearing on an appeal under this chapter shall be conducted by Borough Council according to the provisions of the Pennsylvania Local Agency Law, the Act of April 28, 1978, P.L. 202, No. 53, as amended, and the provisions of the Pennsylvania Open Meetings and Hearings Act, the Act of July 19, 1974, P.L. 486, No. 175, as amended. Such hearing shall be commended within 45 days after receiving notice of such appeal. The appellant shall be notified of Council's decision within 45 days, after the conclusion of said hearing, or any continuance thereof. Said notice of decision of Council shall be given to the appellant, in writing, specifying reasons for said decision, and shall be mailed to the appellant by certified mail, postage prepaid, at appellant's address set forth in the application for license. The decision of Council shall be the decision of a majority of a quorum of the members of Council voting on said appeal, and said decision shall be final.
Any person who shall violate any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $600 and costs of prosecution or, in default of payment of such fine and costs, to undergo imprisonment for no more than 30 days. Each separate act of sale or solicitation committed in violation of the provisions of this chapter shall constitute a separate violation thereof.
Any resident, upon written request to the Borough Manager, may ask to be placed on a restricted listing which will be given to all applicants being issued a transient retail business license. Persons to whom licenses are issued shall not call upon any residents named on the restricted listing.
All persons wishing to engage in any transient retail business within the Borough of Brentwood are required to first obtain a list of residents who have notified the Borough of their desire to be placed on the restricted residence listing. The list may be obtained in person or by telephoning the Borough Manager with a request for the list to be delivered by facsimile or e-mail.