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Having a Yard Sale? Proposed Law Says City Has to Know.

9:02 AM, Mar 20, 2012   |    comments
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ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- Chris Griffis is an avid garage sale attendee, so he's not thrilled about a proposed St. Augustine city ordinance which would regulate yard sales.

"I think it's limiting our freedoms," Griffis said.

Mark Knight is the Director of the Building and Planning Department of the City of St. Augustine. He was asked by city commissioners to draw up a garage sale ordinance after "somebody filed a complaint about a neighbor having yards sales, rather large yard sales."

He said they took place in that one location every weekend before Christmas.

So Knight researched and wrote a proposed ordinance.

"It allows four garage sales per year for three consecutive days each," Knight explained. "And it requires you register your garage sale."

Under the proposed ordinance, a person would not have to pay to have a yard sale and he would not have to obtain a permit. The ordinance requires registering the yard sale before it happens.

Knight said it could be done online or by going to city hall.
"You could even send us an email that says 'I'm having yard sale this weekend,'" Knight explained.

The city aims to keep an inventory of the garage sales and put all garage sale rules under one ordinance.

Neighboring St. Augustine Beach does have a yard sale ordinance, according to its city code which is posted online. St. Augustine Beach requires residents to obtain a permit before having a yard sale.

If the St. Augustine ordinance passes, enforcement will be complaint driven.

"We're not going to be out there on the weekend patrolling for people who haven't registered," Knight said.

Some residents told First Coast News the regulations are needed.
Griffis disagrees. He's not buying the city's new idea. "The city shouldn't really have anything to say about it," Griffis said. "As far as our own rights are concerned, we should have our own public sales."

The city commission will hold a public hearing on the issue Monday, March 26th.

First Coast News

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