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Published August 01, 2012, 10:02 PM

City Commissioner seeks input before enacting panhandling laws

FARGO, N.D. (WDAY TV) - The public and even panhandlers themselves got a chance to weigh in Wednesday night on a possible new panhandling ordinance.

FARGO, N.D. (WDAY TV) - The public and even panhandlers themselves got a chance to weigh in Wednesday night on a possible new panhandling ordinance in Fargo.

City Commissioner Melissa Sobolik wanted input before the commission makes a decision.

Some of the possible new ordinances include no panhandling on any median, highway, off-ramp or on-ramp.

Also panhandlers will have to be 20 feet away from an intersection, crosswalk or bus stop, and 100 feet from any school building.

Doug Schoeszler, panhandler: “If this gets pushed all of the way, it's going to hurt. I'm not the only one. There's other people out there that are in the same boat I am and do the same thing I do. I've been on housing now for over 4 years.”

Keith Ternes, Fargo Police Chief: “It doesn't matter if your sign says ‘I'm a veteran I need help’ or you're selling pizzas, from my perspective this is about trying to create a safe environment from those that are doing the activity and those who may encounter the activity.”

The ordinances, if passed, could go into effect by the end of the month.

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