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Changes considered to law tied to lemonade-stand controversy

POSTED: April 21, 2012 7:00 a.m.

The Midway City Council will meet Monday to consider changes in the city’s law for transient merchants, peddlers and solicitors.

The law has been under study since July, when it brought international attention to Midway after police shut down a lemonade stand operated by three girls last June.

Accounts of the lemonade-stand affair differed and involved the lack of a business license, traffic hazards, unsupervised children and concern about the contents of the lemonade. Midway officials received many complaints as well as death threats, and the police chief’s family was relocated to an undisclosed location after shots were fired at her home.

Council members and officials have been working on an amended ordinance to permit fundraising activities by school groups and other youth activities without payment of licensing fees and to provide other reasonable exceptions.

The council is scheduled to review the ordinance at its workshop at 9 a.m. Monday in the Midway Police Department, 10490 E. Oglethorpe Highway.

The years-long dispute between Midway and the Liberty County Development Authority over the two entities’ sharing of water and sewer services also is on the agenda. According to reports, each entity owes the other money, but they have been unable to agree on payment. Documents showed the LCDA would owe $2,353,476.50 to Midway, including impact fees, but that figure was negotiated down to $286,851.50.  The most recent public documents showed Midway owes $52,857.70 to the authority.

The annual observation of Midway Day is set for April 28 at the Cay Creek Interpretive Center on Charlie Butler Road just off U.S. Highway 84 east of Midway.

Councilman Terrence Doyle plans to discuss vicious dogs and animal control at Monday’s meeting. At the council’s April 9 meeting, Doyle reported several instances of Midway citizens being attacked by dogs, and in some cases receiving severe injuries. Midway police officers sometimes were unable to get out of their cars because of the vicious animals, he said. The council unanimously agreed to tackle the animal-control issue Monday.

Meetings are open to the public.

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