Chapter 5.10
SOLICITORS AND CANVASSERS

Sections:

5.10.010    Regulation of solicitors and canvassers.

5.10.020    Solicitor or canvasser defined.

5.10.030    License fee, term and limitations.

5.10.040    Contents of license application.

5.10.050    Bond required.

5.10.060    Alternate form of employer’s bond.

5.10.070    Orders taken by solicitors or canvassers.

5.10.080    Carrying license required.

5.10.090    Exemptions.

5.10.010 Regulation of solicitors and canvassers.

The City Council finds that the public health, safety and welfare requires that the citizens of the City be provided with information relating to persons and organizations who solicit and canvass within the City, that such activities be regulated, and that the citizens of the City be protected from deceptive and dishonest practices. (Ord. 90-1039 § 45)

5.10.020 Solicitor or canvasser defined.

A “solicitor” or “canvasser” is defined as any person, either as a principal or agent, who goes from place to place within the City, and who:

A. Sells, takes orders for, or offers to sell, any goods, wares or merchandise whether or not collecting in advance for such goods, wares or merchandise; and/or

B. Sells, takes orders for, or offers to sell services, whether or not collecting in advance for such services; and/or

C. Seeks contributions or donations to private causes, as opposed to tax-exempt charities; or

D. Seeks opinions, preferences or other information for commercial purposes. (Ord. 19-1014 § 2 (part), 2019: Ord. 90-1039 § 46)

5.10.030 License fee, term and limitations.

A. Any person seeking to engage in business as a solicitor or canvasser shall file a written application for such license with the Director of Finance on a form provided by the City Manager, or designee. The license required under this chapter is separate from and in addition to a business license that may be required under Chapter 5.05 SMC.

B. The fee for a solicitor or canvasser license shall be as prescribed by an annual resolution of the City Council establishing fees and charges.

C. A solicitor or canvasser license shall limit the number of solicitors or canvassers who are permitted to solicit or canvass for any one activity or entity during any thirty (30) day period of time to not more than ten (10) named individuals. (Ord. 19-1014 § 2 (part), 2019: Ord. 95-1012 § 1: Ord. 90-1039 § 47)

5.10.040 Contents of license application.

The application for a solicitor or canvasser license shall require the following information:

A. Name, description and date of birth of the applicant;

B. Permanent home address and local address of the applicant;

C. A brief description of the nature of the business and of the goods to be sold or services to be offered;

D. If employed by another, the address and name of the employer and a statement of the exact relationship between the applicant and the employer;

E. The length of time for which the right to do business is required;

F. The place of manufacture or production of goods to be offered for sale, the present location of such goods and the proposed method of delivery;

G. The fingerprints of the applicant;

H. The names of two (2) reliable persons, residing in the State, as references to the good character and business responsibility of the applicant or, in lieu of such references, the

means of obtaining evidence as to the applicant’s character and business responsibility;

I. A statement as to any convictions of crimes or violations of municipal ordinances during the past five (5) years, to include the date, the nature of the offense and the penalty assessed therefore;

J. A statement that a license, if granted, will not be used or represented as an endorsement by the City for solicitations thereunder.

K. The applicant shall be sworn to or certified under penalty of perjury by each applicant. (Ord. 90-1039 § 48)

5.10.050 Bond required.

Every applicant shall file with the Director of Finance before a license shall be issued, a bond in the amount of one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) executed by the applicant as principal and a surety company authorized to do business in the State, running in favor of the City, conditioned that any person who may suffer any loss or damage by reason of any malfeasance, misfeasance, or deceptive practice in the conduct of such solicitation or canvass shall have the right to institute an action for recovery against the licensee and the surety upon such bond. The bond shall further require that the principal shall fully comply with all provisions of State law and City ordinances regulating the business of solicitors or canvassers, or business in general, and that all moneys paid as a down payment or donated will be accounted for and applied according to the representation of the solicitor or canvasser and further that the property ordered or sold will be delivered or the services will be performed according to the undertaking of the solicitor or canvasser. Any person injured by the licensee’s/principal’s failure to account for moneys received, deliver the goods ordered or sold, or perform the services promised, shall have in his or her own name, a right of action on such bond against both the principal and surety. (Ord. 90-1039 § 49)

5.10.060 Alternate form of employer’s bond.

In the place of the bond required at Section 5.10.050, any person employing solicitors or canvassers shall file with the Director of Finance before a license shall issue to any of such person’s employees, a bond in the amount of five thousand dollars ($5,000.00) executed by the employer as principal and a surety company authorized to do business in the State as a surety, running in favor of the City, conditioned that any person who may suffer any loss or damage by reason of any malfeasance, misfeasance, or deceptive practice in the conduct of such solicitation or canvass shall have the right to institute an action for recovery against the licensee and the surety upon such bond. Such bond shall further require that the employer and all employees and agents of the employer, shall fully comply with all provisions of State law and City ordinances regulating the business of solicitors or canvassers, or business in general, and that all moneys paid as a down payment or donated will be accounted for and applied according to the representation of the solicitor or canvasser and further that the property ordered or sold will be delivered or the services will be performed according to the undertaking of the solicitor or canvasser. Any person injured by the licensee’s/principal’s failure to account for moneys received, deliver the goods ordered or sold, or perform the services promised, shall have in his or her own name, a right of action on such bond against both the principal and surety. (Ord. 90-1039 § 50)

5.10.070 Orders taken by solicitors or canvassers.

All orders or donations taken by licensed solicitors or canvassers shall be written in duplicate, with one (1) copy to be given to the purchaser or contributor. The order or donation shall contain the name and address of the solicitor or canvasser, and in the case of an order, its complete terms, the amount of any prepayment, and a statement of the purchaser’s right of rescission pursuant to State law. (Ord. 90-1039 § 51)

5.10.080 Carrying license required.

The solicitor’s or canvasser’s license shall be carried at all time when soliciting or canvassing in the City and shall be exhibited by such solicitor or canvasser whenever requested to do so by a police officer, any City official, or any persons solicited or canvassed. (Ord. 90-1039 § 52)

5.10.090 Exemptions.

The licensing and bonding requirements applicable to solicitors and canvassers shall not apply to:

A. Newspaper carriers, whether subscriptions are taken or not;

B. Any person selling or delivering, door-to-door or on an established route, milk or milk products, bakery goods, or laundry and dry cleaning services;

C. All persons licensed for charitable solicitations pursuant to Section 5.05.440, provided that the solicitation is managed and conducted solely by officers and members of charitable organizations who are unpaid for such services;

D. All persons under the age of eighteen (18) unless employed by another person or organization;

E. Bona fide candidates, campaign workers and political committees campaigning on behalf of candidates or on ballot issues and persons soliciting signatures of registered voters on petitions to be submitted to any governmental agency. (Ord. 90-1039 § 53)