St. Petersburg wants to make it illegal for panhandlers to lie on their cardboard signs

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As you read the following story, just ask:

How would the police check the accuracy of those claims?

Can the city really regulate what people write on signs?

And after the city’s successful crackdown on the homeless and panhandling population, who’s left to break the new law?

The city is proposing a new ordinance aimed at truth in advertising — on those cardboard signs people hold up on the side of the road.

The new ordinance would ban “fraudulent panhandling,” making it illegal for panhandlers to claim that they’re homeless or disabled or a veteran or stranded if they’re not.

“Most of the people who fly the cards say they’re homeless or veterans, but most aren’t veterans or homeless,” said Robert Marbut, the city’s consultant on homelessness. “But they are making a lot of tax-free money.”


Continue reading this story here.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.