TITLE 5
Businesses and Professions

CHAPTER 5-11
Hawkers and Peddlers

SECTION 5-11-18


§ 5-11-18 Local licensing – Fees – Persons exempt.

(a)(1) The board or bureau of police commissioners in any city or town where a board or bureau of police commissioners is established, and if no board or bureau of police commissioners is established then the town or city council, is authorized to provide, by ordinance in the case of any city or town council:

(i) For the issuing and revocation for just and good cause of licenses to all hawkers and peddlers;

(ii) In the same manner to fix a penalty, not exceeding a fine of two hundred dollars ($200) for any one offense or imprisonment not exceeding ten (10) days, for selling or offering for sale any goods, wares, or merchandise, including food or beverages, as hawkers and peddlers within that town or city without a license; and

(iii) For charging and collecting fees for those licenses; provided, that the fee charged by any board or bureau of police commissioners or city or town council, for any one license for any one year, for selling or offering for sale, as a hawker and peddler, shall not exceed the sum of fifty dollars ($50.00).

(2) No license is required of any person selling religious books and publications on behalf of bible, tract, or other religious or moral societies for the purpose of promoting religious or moral improvement, and which are sold for that purpose and not for pecuniary profit; nor of any person peddling or selling any articles of wearing apparel manufactured with his or her own hands.

(b) The following provisions as to the issuance and revocation of licenses apply to the city and town councils specified:

(1) Woonsocket. The city council of the city of Woonsocket is authorized to provide, by ordinance, for the issuing and revocation at pleasure of licenses to hawkers and peddlers, pursuant to the provisions of this section, on a weekly basis and to establish a fee not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500) per year;

(2) Middletown, East Greenwich and Glocester. Town councils of the towns of Middletown, East Greenwich, and Glocester are authorized to provide, by ordinance, for the discretionary issuance and revocation of licenses to hawkers and peddlers, pursuant to the provisions of this section on a daily or weekly basis, to establish reasonable fees for the issuance and revocation, and to promulgate, by ordinance, reasonable rules and regulations as to the placement, duration, location, number, and operation of those licenses within the town;

(3) Cumberland and Bristol. The town councils of the towns of Cumberland and Bristol are authorized to provide, by ordinance, for the discretionary issuance and revocation of licenses to hawkers and peddlers on all state highways within the town on July 4 in any year and on a daily or weekly basis, and to establish reasonable fees for the issuance and revocation, and to promulgate, by ordinance, reasonable rules and regulations as to placement, duration, location, number, and operation of those licenses within the town;

(4) Smithfield. The town council of the town of Smithfield is authorized to provide, by ordinance, for the discretionary issuance and revocation of licenses on a daily, weekly, monthly or annual basis, to establish reasonable fees for the issuance and revocation not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500) per year and to promulgate, by ordinance, reasonable rules and regulations as to the placement, duration, location, number, and operation of these licenses within the town of Smithfield;

(5) Providence. The city council of the city of Providence is authorized to provide, by ordinance, for the issuance and revocation of licenses to hawkers and peddlers and to provide for the promulgation of reasonable rules and regulations as to the placement, duration, location, number and operation of those licenses within the city of Providence, and to establish reasonable fees for the issuance and revocation that may exceed the sum prescribed in this section;

(6) Pawtucket. The city council of the city of Pawtucket is authorized to provide, by ordinance, for the discretionary issuance and revocation of licenses to hawkers and peddlers on a daily, weekly, monthly, or annual basis and to promulgate, by ordinance, reasonable rules and regulations as to the placement, duration, location, number, and operation of those licenses within the city of Pawtucket and to establish reasonable fees for the issuance and revocation that may exceed the sum prescribed in this section;

(7) Tiverton. The town council of the town of Tiverton is authorized to provide, by ordinance, for the discretionary issuance and revocation of licenses to hawkers and peddlers on a daily, weekly, monthly or annual basis, to establish reasonable fees for the issuance and revocation not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500) per year, and to promulgate, by ordinance, reasonable rules and regulations as to the placement, duration, location, number and operation of these licenses within the town of Tiverton;

(8) Warwick. The city council of the city of Warwick is authorized to provide, by ordinance, for the discretionary issuance and revocation of licenses to hawkers and peddlers on a daily, weekly, monthly, or annual basis and to promulgate, by ordinance, reasonable rules and regulations as to the placement, duration, location, number, and operation of those licenses within the city of Warwick and to establish reasonable fees for the issuance and revocation that may exceed the sum prescribed in this section;

(9) West Warwick. The town council of the town of West Warwick is authorized to prescribe through ordinance reasonable rules and regulations as to the placement, duration, location, number and operation of those licenses within the town of West Warwick and to establish a fee not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500) per issuance. The town council is also authorized to establish by ordinance a penalty for violation of the ordinance not to exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000) enforced through the West Warwick municipal court; and

(10) Burrillville. The town council of the town of Burrillville is authorized to provide, by ordinance, for the discretionary issuance and revocation of licenses to hawkers and peddlers on a daily, weekly, monthly or annual basis, and to promulgate, by ordinance, reasonable rules and regulations as to the placement, duration, location, number and operation of those licenses within the town of Burrillville, and to establish reasonable fees for the issuance and revocation that may exceed the sum prescribed in this section. The town council is also authorized to establish, by ordinance, a penalty for violation of the ordinance not to exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000) enforced through the Burrillville municipal court; and

(11) Richmond. The town council of the town of Richmond is authorized to provide by ordinance for the licensing of any person over the age of eighteen (18) who sells or attempts to sell, merchandise at the home or business of a customer having not been invited to the home or business by the occupant for purposes of the sale, in the same manner that hawkers and peddlers are licensed and the town is further authorized to provide by ordinance for the licensing of these sellers as well as hawkers and peddlers on a daily, weekly, monthly, or annual basis for a fee not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500) per year.

(c) No license shall be issued under this section without the hawker or peddler providing proof that he or she has been issued a permit to make sales at retail by the division of taxation. Each applicant shall provide two (2) forms of identification containing the applicant's address prior to the issuance of that peddling license. If the applicant is a resident of a homeless shelter or other transitional housing program, a letter certifying this residency from the homeless shelter or transitional housing program is acceptable in lieu of the two (2) forms of identification containing the applicant's address.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1901, ch. 846, § 1; P.L. 1901, ch. 923, § 1; P.L. 1902, ch. 1065, § 1; P.L. 1909, ch. 191, § 16; G.L. 1923, ch. 219, § 16; P.L. 1932, ch. 1937, § 1; G.L. 1938, ch. 365, § 16; G.L. 1956, § 5-11-18; P.L. 1983, ch. 152, § 1; P.L. 1984, ch. 378, § 1; P.L. 1985, ch. 87, § 1; P.L. 1987, ch. 86, § 2; P.L. 1987, ch. 292, § 1; P.L. 1988, ch. 50, § 1; P.L. 1988, ch. 217, § 1; P.L. 1989, ch. 452, § 1; P.L. 1990, ch. 448, § 1; P.L. 1992, ch. 63, § 1; P.L. 1992, ch. 105, § 1; P.L. 1993, ch. 353, § 1; P.L. 1993, ch. 428, § 1; P.L. 1994, ch. 295, § 1; P.L. 1995, ch. 174, § 1; P.L. 1995, ch. 185, § 1; P.L. 1995, ch. 246, § 1; P.L. 1995, ch. 293, § 1; P.L. 1996, ch. 328, § 1; P.L. 1999, ch. 354, § 4; P.L. 2002, ch. 87, § 1; P.L. 2005, ch. 18, § 1; P.L. 2009, ch. 278, § 1; P.L. 2009, ch. 279, § 1; P.L. 2011, ch. 197, § 1; P.L. 2011, ch. 276, § 1.)