I know I wrote here several years ago now about how the modern culture of bureaucracy—the imperatives of the administrative state—had filtered all the way down to most local governments, as seen by the number of instances where little kids’ lemonade stands were shut down for bureaucratic reasons. Police in Coralville, Iowa, for example, shut down 4-year-old Abigail Krstinger’s sidewalk lemonade stand because she lacked a $400 city permit—a feat duplicated in Midway, Georgia; Appleton, Wisconsin; McAllen, Texas, and more than three dozen other cities across the country that were reported in the media.Some parents were slapped with $500 fines for allowing their kids to sell lemonade without the proper (expensive) permits. Local bureaucracies have even restricted or stopped annual Girl Scout cookie sales drives.
So guess which state has stepped up to decriminalize Susie and Johnnie’s lemonade stand? Of course you don’t need to ask:
Great news, children of Texas: Your unlicensed lemonade stands soon won’t be criminal enterprises.
Gov. Greg Abbott late Monday signed a bill that prohibits cities and neighborhood associations from enacting rules that block or regulate children trying to sell nonalcoholic drinks like lemonade on private property. The law targets local health codes and neighborhood rules that intentionally or unintentionally ban the stands or require permits for them to operate.
Support for such a law in Texas began to grow in 2015, when police in the East Texas town of Overton reportedly shut down a lemonade stand by two young siblings who were trying to earn money to buy a Father’s Day present.
Is it too soon to start the Abbott 2024 campaign committee?
Reminds me a little of 1993, when Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan remarked that the most significant achievement of Congress that year was decriminalizing babysitting.