Cincy to tax panhandlers?

CINCINNATI (AP) — A city lawmaker in Cincinnati wants to require panhandlers to get a permit and pay the city’s earnings tax…

Civil rights attorney Jennifer Kinsley says Berding’s idea is unconstitutional and says maintaining a system for registering panhandlers could be costly.

It’s unenforceable, for sure. But unconstitutional? On what grounds? If I’m paid to beg for a nonprofit, I have to pay tax on what I’m paid. If I have to get a license to braid hair, why not a permit to panhandle? Yes, it is unconstitutional — but no more so than almost any other law in restraint of trade.

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One Response to Cincy to tax panhandlers?

  1. Tom Jackson says:

    Jeff,
    If making the panhandlers get a permit doesn’t work out, perhaps the folks who physically confront me in downtown Cleveland and ask for money could be arrested for “impersonating a government official.”

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