Maryland Legislators Move to Protect Kids’ Lemonade Stands

The Maryland House Environment and Transportation Committee on Tuesday heard testimony about a bill that would prevent local governments from outlawing children’s lemonade stands on private property.

Yes, you read that right. It’s illegal in Maryland for children to run lemonade stands in their families’ yards unless they obtain all the licenses, permits, and inspections needed to run a food-service business.

Just ask Xander Alpier, who testified at the hearing. 

In 2011, when he was just 6, Montgomery County fined his family $500 (but later waived it after public outcry) for running an illegal lemonade stand to raise money for the Georgetown Children’s Cancer Center.

They were lucky they got just a $500 fine. The county could have imposed thousands of dollars in fines and sent them to jail.

Maryland law makes it a crime punishable by up to 90 days in jail to operate a lemonade stand without all the proper licenses and permits. A second offense could bring up to a year in jail.

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