Archive for Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Permit required for local solicitors

June 21, 2006

There's a cleaning product on the market that removes pesky grime from automobile wheels, brightens tarnished brass and erases those ugly stains on driveways.

Tonganoxie residents might have heard more about this product in the past few days as solicitors were hoofing door-to-door selling the product.

A city ordinance requires each solicitor to register at city hall for a soliciting permit, which costs $25 a day, or $500 a year.

According to Patty Hagg, the city's utility billing clerk, the city has issued just a handful of permits in recent months.

Last Thursday, several solicitors were selling a multi-purpose cleaner, but only one of them had a valid permit.

Police Sgt. Tony Hernandez said the group's manager was issued a permit and then made copies of the permit for fellow workers. The manager's name was covered with correction fluid and other names were inserted.

If the bell rings

Here are a few tips to remember if a solicitor stops by your residence:

¢ Ask to see their soliciting permit. All solicitors are required to register at city hall before selling products in the city. Permits are issued for a day or a year, so check whether it is a current permit.

¢ If a solicitor becomes rude or refuses to leave, call Tonganoxie police at (913) 369-3754.

¢ Citizens can post a "no soliciting" sign if they would rather not speak with solicitors.

Hernandez didn't ticket the workers, but their business ended that afternoon after he spoke with them.

On Monday, workers selling the cleaning products returned to city hall. Each one paid for a permit and was back selling throughout town.

Billy Adcox, the police department's lead investigator, said he's not received any reports of scams related to door-to-door sellers, but he did say that occasionally solicitors are stubborn. In fact, on Thursday, a solicitor "got a little rude" with a resident who declined purchasing any products. Monday, another resident complained to police that a solicitor would not leave her alone.

Hernandez said he urges citizens to ask solicitors to see their permit.

"We run into a lot of solicitors and they all don't understand that they need to buy a permit," Hernandez said.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.