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Kids' Lemonade Stands Are Illegal In Texas. State Lawmakers Are Taking A Stand To Change That.

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Tony Hisgett/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)
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Lemonade stands aren't legal in Texas, but House lawmakers gave a preliminary OK today to a bill that would undo that legislative oversight that's dragged on for 85 legislative sessions.

A bill from Fort Worth Republican state Rep. Matt Krause would allow the sale of lemonade and other non-alcoholic beverages on private property and in public parks. Krause told a committee late last month the legislation was spurred in part by a county sheriff shutting down a lemonade stand outside Tyler.

In that case, two sisters from Overton were raising money to take their dad to a waterpark, KLTV reported. Overton police shut down the girls' stand because lemonade requires refrigeration so it doesn't spoil, they said.

"House Bill 234 would ensure that anyone under the age of 18 is free of any kind of fine, fee or regulation when they want to start those first businesses," Krause said before the House vote. "We heard compelling testimony in committee about these young entrepreneurs. We want to keep that spirit alive and well."

An amendment today from state Rep. Mayes Middleton (R-Wallisville) would also prevent homeowner associations from drafting rules preventing neighborhood lemonade stands and allowing lemonade stands in public parks.

House lawmakers approved the bill on second reading this afternoon. It’ll be back before the House tomorrow for a final reading – before heading to the Senate.

Andrew Weber is a general assignment reporter for KUT, focusing on criminal justice, policing, courts and homelessness in Austin and Travis County. Got a tip? You can email him at aweber@kut.org. Follow him on Twitter @England_Weber.
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