Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) signed a bill into law this week that will allow children to operate lemonade stands in his state without fear of legal repercussions.
Wait…wasn’t this always legal?
While lemonade stands may be seen as a staple of an American childhood, it turns out that they violate laws regarding the selling of food or beverages in many states. In 2013, a 10-year-old in Indiana had her stand shut down due to lack of a permit. Last May, two young boys in Colorado had their stand shut down for lack of a permit. In August, a 7-year-old boy had his stand shut down for operating without a permit. And these are just a few examples.
This Texas legislation was inspired by a 2015 incident where two young girls, ages 7 and 8, had tried to use a lemonade stand to raise money to take their dad to a waterpark for Father’s Day. Police shut their operation down for violating the law by not having a “peddler’s permit.” Even when the city agreed to waive their permit fee, the health department said that they could not sell their lemonade without an inspection and another permit.
What happened now?
“Here’s a commonsense law,” Abbott said in a video on Twitter on Monday. “It allows kids to sell lemonade at lemonade stands. We had to pass it because police shut down a lemonade stand here in Texas. So kids,” he said signing the document on his desk and holding up a glass of lemonade. “Cheers.”
The law states:
Notwithstanding any other law, a municipality, county, or other local public health authority may not adopt or enforce an ordinance, order, or rule that prohibits or regulates, including by requiring a license, permit, or fee, the occasional sale of lemonade or other nonalcoholic beverages from a stand on private property by an individual younger than 18 years of age.
This new law will go into effect Sept. 1, so children in Texas this summer will still have to sell their contraband beverages with care.