- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 15, 2017

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Los Angeles has moved to decriminalize street vending but stopped short of granting amnesty to those convicted under current law.

The City Council unanimously voted Wednesday to remove criminal penalties for those who push hot dogs, fruit and other items from carts. Vendors now face only tickets and civil fines while the city works out a system for legalizing them.

Meanwhile, it remains a misdemeanor to sell food and goods at any time on all 10,750 miles of public sidewalks. LA is the only major U.S. city to completely ban such vending.

Critics say many of the estimated 20,000 sidewalk vendors are believed to be in the U.S. illegally and convicting them of a crime raises their chances of deportation. They fear an immigration crackdown under President Donald Trump.

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