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Law banning solicitors goes into effect Oct. 1

May 17, 2003|by TARA REILLY

Solicitors asking for donations at intersections in Washington County will be around for the next several months, Sheriff Charles F. Mades said this week.

A law banning the practice does not go into effect until Oct. 1.

The solicitors, most of whom are from out of state, mainly gather on Halfway Boulevard near Valley Mall and approach people sitting in their cars and ask for money.

Mades said deputies have been informing the solicitors of the new law.

On Friday, he described the solicitors as transients who "pop on and off the interstate" to gather money.

The solicitors tell police they represent churches and small independent cheerleading groups, Mades said. Police have also come across homeless people asking for money, he said.

When the law goes into effect, Mades said police might have a hard time persuading the groups to leave.

"I have a real good feeling we're probably going to arrest some people," Mades said.

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Mades asked for the law late last year, saying the solicitors are an eyesore and cause traffic hazards on busy roads.

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