PALESTINE — Beginning Feb. 20, a new city ordinance will take effect that will prohibit people from soliciting donations at intersections.
The Palestine City Council passed the ordinance to address obstruction of right-of-way concerns on Jan. 27 by amending Section 86-5 of Article 1, Chapter 86 of the City of Palestine Code of Ordinances.
The amendment prohibits a person from obstructing a sidewalk, street or public place by loafing, lounging, lying, sitting or standing on public sidewalks, streets and public places. It addresses the issue of solicitation from a public right-of-way, and prohibits non-licensed personnel from approaching a vehicle unless they are advising motorists of an emergency situation.
“A number of citizens had contacted city representatives about safety issues regarding people soliciting donations at our intersections,” Palestine City Manager Wendy Ellis said. “In response to citizen concerns, council crafted this ordinance to eliminate unsafe conditions and ensure the flow of traffic around our community is not interrupted.”
This amendment is subject to a public notice period and will be in full effect starting Feb. 20. Prior to this date, law enforcement cannot apply the ordinance to the public.
The Palestine Police Department encourages the public to utilize the TIP411 anonymous tip system currently in place for this and the reporting of any suspected criminal activity. The police department also offers a web-based reporting function on their city webpage.
For more information visit: www.cityofpalestinetx.com/tip411.php.
For full text of the amendment, contact City Secretary Teresa Herrera at 903-731-8414.