It’s a sign of American ingenuity: a summer lemonade stand. But what happens when your lemonade stand gets busted by cops for being “illegal?” That’s what two little girls from Texas had to wonder when they were busted earlier this week.
— SheKnows (@SheKnows) June 11, 2015
Eight-year-old Andria and 7-year-old Zoey Green had set up their lemonade stand to try and raise $100 to buy their dad a Father’s Day gift.
According to KLTV, Zoey said, “We had kettle corn and lemonade. The lemonade was for 50 cents and the kettle corn was a dollar, but if you got both it was a dollar.”
Sounds like a sound business plan, especially for a 7-year-old, right? Not according to Texas police. After making $25, Overton Police showed up and the lemonade stand was busted.
According to the police, the two small girls didn’t have a “Peddler’s Permit.” The girls were told that the $150 permit was necessary to run their lemonade stand.
— Doyle Murphy (@DoyleMurphy) June 10, 2015
The girls’ mother, Sandi Evans, was confused by the police present and, according to the Huffington Post, told the police, “What’s going on?… I didn’t know we had to… Really, we have to have a permit?“
The girls’ mother ran to City Hall to get the appropriate permit for the girls to continue their lemonade stand, and although the city workers took pity and waived the $150 fee, Evans was notified that she also needed “to be licensed by the Rusk County Health Department.”
The girls and their mother, frustrated by the whole thing, decided to stop selling lemonade and instead ask for donations, “a legal loophole.”
So what exactly is the big deal about selling lemonade on the corner as kids have done for years and years?
According to CNN, “A Texas law prohibits the sale of any food items that could spoil without proper temperature control and lemonade is included. In addition to a permit, a health inspection must take place before a permit is granted.”
So what did police have to say about the lemonade stand being busted? Police who arrived at the scene for the “illegal” lemonade stand told the girls’ mother, “We just have to enforce ’em… We don’t write ’em.”
The Overton Police Chief Clyde Carter also commented on the incident, saying, “It’s illegal to sell lemonade without a permit. But we didn’t tell them to shut down, we just asked them to get a permit.”
And if this little lemonade stand being busted isn’t bad enough, in 2011, a group of kids in Maryland were fined $500 for not having the proper permits.