- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Police in Overton, Texas, forced a pair of little girls to shut down their makeshift lemonade stand after only an hour of business.

Sisters Zoey and Andria Green, 7 and 8, were trying to raise $105 for a Father’s Day present to take their dad to Splash Kingdom, a local ABC affiliate reported.

“The girls are always into making their own money,” said their mother, Sandi Evans.

“We had kettle corn and lemonade,” Zoey explained. “The lemonade was for 50 cents and the kettle corn was a dollar, but if you got both it was a dollar.”

She and her sister had been open for business about an hour Monday and had made more than $25 when police showed up.

“A code enforcement officer and the chief, she called me to the side and said we needed a permit,” Ms. Evans recalled.

Texas House Bill 970 requires an inspection and permit for the sale of food that requires time or temperature control to prevent spoilage, ABC reported.

“I think that’s ridiculous,” Ms. Evans said. “I think they’re 7 and 8 and they’re just trying to make money for their own cause.”

Police Chief Clyde Carter explained, “We have to follow by the state health guidelines. They have to have a permit if they’re going to do the lemonade stands.”

Overton City Manager Charles Cunningham said selling lemonade at a stand is illegal, according to state law.

“This is not a city ordinance, but a state law that we must enforce,” he told the Tyler Morning Telegraph. “We are not out looking for people selling lemonade, but in this case, the police chief was driving around and saw them in the road and stopped due to safety concerns.”

Mr. Cunningham said the department spends most of their days looking for serious crime, but this was an exception.

“I think this was just a happenstance thing and not something our police do every day,” he said. “I’m 72 years old, and when I was a kid, no one gave something like this a thought, but over time, they are placing restrictions on everything.”

The Green sisters said they plan to take advantage of a loophole and set up their lemonade stand again this Saturday, only they’ll be giving their treats away for free and accept donations.

Since local media covered the story, Ms. Evans said the girls have received a wave of support and even received tickets to Six Flags and Splash Kingdom, the Morning Telegraph reported.

Since the tickets were donated, Ms. Evans said any additional donations collected Saturday will be donated to a scholarship fund that benefits Overton High School students.

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