Peddlers ordinance in Cape Coral
Photo: Video by fox4now.com
CREATED Jul. 18, 2013
CAPE CORAL Fla.- Recent attacks on door-to-door salesmen in Cape Coral are raising questions about who has permission to knock on your door in the first place.
In the past year... one man selling Omaha Steaks was shot and killed after knocking on the door of a Cape Coral home.
And just this past month, another Cape homeowner with a "no soliciting" sign in his yard pulled a gun on a Tru-Lawn salesman.
So what exactly is required of salesman in order to legally show up on your doorstep?
If you want to go door to door to sell anything in Cape Coral ... you need a permit.
You get it here at Cape Coral city hall.
Frank Cassidy for the city's code enforcement manager, he explains that the peddlers license is "an attempt to provide a filter - a level of safety- for the community to understand that you don't have people running through neighborhoods Knocking on doors for the wrong reasons."
To get registered, sales people have to get finger printed, present a valid ID and offered proof of employment.
Its all designed to protect residents and those pushing products.
And, Cassidy encourages citizens that "if you have someone knock on their door to sell you something - if your not comfortable - call us.!"
But this doesn't apply to everyone knocking on your door, particularly those with a religious message.
Thats a first amendment rights issue and doesn't involve a product or exchanging money.
But what about something as simple as Girl Scout cookies and kids who sell things for their school.
Do they need to get finger printed?
Cassidy explained - they just try to use common sense in dealing with children.
He said "we have been notified that a lot of them don't do door to door anymore... its more of neighbor to neighbor kind of thing."
But as far as adults and companies that go door to door ... the city wants to get the word out - they need to register.
An annual license costs one-hundred dollars per year.
The city has never actually fined anyone yet.