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Bennington adopts panhandling measure

BENNINGTON, Vt. (AP) -- The Bennington selectboard has passed a measure that would restrict panhandling on public property in the Vermont town.

The board voted 5-1 Monday night to adopt an amendment that would prohibit someone from misrepresenting how they would use the proceeds from panhandling; lower the distance a person could panhandle from a business entrance to 10 feet, down from 15; and prohibit people from using their vehicles as housing.

The Bennington Banner reports the amendment is to an existing bylaw regarding the obstruction of public ways and public nuisances. It was drafted after Town Manager Stuart Hurd received complaints that panhandling in the downtown was problematic.

It does not go into effect for another 60 days, during which time it can be appealed.