Village Board Amends New Local Codes

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Village attorney John Gibbons reads more about the amended law. (Photo by Anthony Murray)

At last week’s public hearing, the village board made an amendment to its soliciting and peddling municipal code in part to a Supreme Court ruling.

“Back in 1994, the Village of Mineola adopted a peddling and soliciting law aimed at regulating solicitors and peddlers within the village boundaries,” said village attorney John Gibbons. “The law has remained the same for the past 25 years and since the enactment of our law the basis has been litigated in federal courts and in the Supreme Court concerning First Amendment rights, which have had an effect within cause in this nature.”

The proposed amendment is now intended to make the village’s law consistent with those court decisions.

“We have removed subjective criteria, such as to require proof of good character and left in place objective criteria such as, allowing the village to deny an application based upon past criminal convictions, which would render the applicant unfit to operate in the village,” Gibbons told the board. “We remove the requirement to post the $1,000 bond, which would have the effect of silencing those who cannot afford a bond.”

The village has also extended the time for solicitation from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. since the Supreme Court has held that not all hours of solicitation during daylight hours is an abridgement of First Amendment rights.

“In all other respects, our peddlers and solicitation law remains as it has been since 1994,” said Gibbons.

The village board also made an amendment to its municipal code about electricians and permit requirements.

“At present, in the Village of Mineola, plumbers are required to apply for and obtain a plumbing permit with our village building department to perform plumbing work,” explained Gibbons. “However, the corollary to that requirement does not exist in our code for electricians, although it has always been a requirement that electricians apply for and obtain a permit from the village building department. This proposal of the law closes the loop and puts in our code the requirement that has always existed.”

The next village board meeting is Wednesday, Oct. 2, at 7:30 p.m. at village hall.

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