Online Sunshine Logo
Official Internet Site of the Florida Legislature
June 13, 2024
Text: 'NEW Advanced Legislative Search'
Interpreter Services for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
Go to MyFlorida House
Go to MyFlorida House
Select Year:  
The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Chapter 496
View Entire Chapter
F.S. 496.425
496.425 Solicitation of funds within public transportation facilities.
(1) As used in this section:
(a) “Authority” means this state or any agency thereof, a county or municipality, or any entity established by law for the purpose of operating a public transportation facility.
(b) “Facility” means any public transportation facility, including, but not limited to, railroad stations, bus stations, ship ports, ferry terminals, roadside welcome stations, highway service plazas, airports served by scheduled passenger service, or highway rest stations.
(2) Any person desiring to solicit funds within a facility shall first obtain a written permit therefor from the authority responsible for the administration of the facility.
(a) An application in writing for such permit shall be submitted to the authority and shall set forth:
1. The full name, mailing address, and telephone number of the person or organization sponsoring, promoting, or conducting the proposed activities;
2. The full name, mailing address, and telephone number of each person who will participate in such activities and of the person who will have supervision of and responsibility for the proposed activities;
3. A description of the proposed activities indicating the type of communication to be involved;
4. The dates on and the hours during which the activities are proposed to be carried out and the expected duration of the proposed activities; and
5. The number of persons to be engaged in such activities.
(b) The authority may require an applicant to include such information which it determines is reasonably necessary to identify the organization or persons involved.
(c) The organization sponsoring the proposed activities shall attach to the application a copy of the consumer certificate of exemption issued to such organization by the Department of Revenue.
(3) The authority shall promptly issue the permit upon receipt, and any necessary verification, of proper application. The authority may effectuate appropriate restrictions on the hours and location of such activities and the number of solicitors involved, in keeping with the intended operation of the facility. The permit shall specifically designate the area or areas where solicitation of funds is permitted. Such permit shall be valid for a period of 1 year, except as otherwise provided in subsection (10). Any appeal from a denial of an application shall be handled on an expedited basis.
(4)(a) Solicitation of funds shall be conducted only from within the specific areas designated by the authority for this purpose.
(b) The activities shall be conducted only in or upon those premises which are nonsecured, public use areas. They shall not be conducted:
1. In any area reserved for a particular use, such as a parking area, restroom facility, restaurant, ticket counter, or baggage claim area.
2. Within any area leased exclusively to a tenant by the authority operating the facility.
3. Within 10 feet of main door areas.
4. Within 50 feet of an airport security check area.
(5) The person or organization receiving a permit shall notify the authority, at least 3 days prior to undertaking any solicitation for which the permit was granted, of intent to undertake such solicitation. The notice shall name the individual solicitors, the area, and the time period, not to exceed 1 week, during which solicitation will be conducted. The same 3-day advance notice shall be given for subsequent periods.
(6) Each individual solicitor shall display prominently on her or his person a badge or insignia, provided by the solicitor and approved by the authority, bearing the signature of a responsible officer of the authority and that of the solicitor and describing the solicitor by name, age, height, weight, eye color, hair color, address, and principal occupation and indicating the name of the organization for which funds are solicited.
(7)(a) In conducting the activities, no person shall:
1. In any way obstruct, delay, or interfere with the free movements of any other person; seek to coerce or physically disturb any other person; or hamper or impede the conduct of any authorized business at the facility;
2. Use any sound or voice-amplifying apparatus on the premises of the facility;
3. Solicit or accept any donation of money except in accordance with paragraph (4)(a);
4. Use any drum, bell, tambourine, horn, or other noisemaking device;
5. In any way indicate to the public that she or he is a representative of the facility; or
6. Misrepresent her or his identity.
(b) The authority shall adopt rules governing the activities of persons or organizations obtaining such permits.
(8) A facility manager or her or his authorized representative may declare an emergency because of unusually congested conditions in a facility due to adverse weather, schedule interruptions, or extremely heavy traffic movements or for emergency security measures. In the event of an emergency, an announcement to this effect shall be made. Any person soliciting contributions shall immediately cease such activities for the duration of the emergency.
(9) This section shall not be deemed to repeal, modify, or affect any rules adopted by authorities prior to October 1, 1981, relative to access to public areas at airports by persons seeking to solicit funds. Such authorities shall be relieved from complying with the provisions hereof.
(10) The authority may suspend or revoke the permit held by any person for good cause shown. Such good cause includes, but is not limited to:
(a) Violation of a material restriction imposed by the authority.
(b) Continued, substantial complaints from the public about harassment.
(c) Any action that adversely affects the health or safety of the public.
(d) Fraud or misrepresentation in any application.

A suspension shall not exceed a period of 6 months. If a permit has been revoked, a new permit may not be issued to the person or organization for 6 months after the revocation. Any hearing on a suspension or revocation shall be held within 60 days after request for such a hearing.

(11) A person who solicits funds in violation of any of the provisions of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable by fine as provided in s. 775.083. Upon a second or subsequent conviction, such person is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable by fine as provided in s. 775.083. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, ch. 81-112; ss. 36, 41, ch. 84-310; s. 2, ch. 89-205; s. 24, ch. 91-208; s. 4, ch. 91-429; s. 565, ch. 97-103.
Note.Former s. 496.40; s. 496.008.