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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Board of Works prohibits fundraising at intersections

Board of Public Works will no longer grant permission to use intersections for fund-raisers

Posted on Sepa. 25, 2012 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on Sepp. 25, 2012 at 12:23 p.m.

GOSHEN — Fundraising groups will no longer be given permission to collect money at intersections after the Board of Public Works and Safety voted to prohibit the action Monday.

Mayor Allan Kauffman said he brought the resolution to the board for several reasons.

Safety was a major issue, but convenience was also a concern. Kauffman said people often complain about being stopped on their way through town.

Kauffman also believed allowing groups to raise funds at intersections left the practice too wide open. If the board said yes to one group, he theorized, what grounds would they have to deny any other interested group?

Prohibiting the use of intersections for fundraising will take care of all those issues, Kauffman believes.

The decision, however, complicates the annual “Fill the Boot” drive by the Goshen Professional Firefighters union.

For more than 25 years, Goshen firefighters have set up at locations to raise money for muscular dystrophy research. Donation spots have included the “five points” intersection, Bashor Road and Greene Road and recently at College Street and Main Street.

Assistant Fire Chief Jim Ramer seemed leery about the blanket prohibition. “Do you realize that we raise in the high teens of thousands for muscular dystrophy?” he asked at the meeting.

Still, the news came with little surprise to Goshen Professional Firefighters union head Corey Wortinger. He noted that fundraising at intersections is not as safe as it was before. “I think we kind of saw it coming down the road,” he said of the decision.

Realizing a ban was eventually coming, Wortinger said they had already been thinking of alternatives. Some of the options available include setting up donation spots at businesses, or even simply standing outside of businesses.

The resolution states that any already scheduled charity drives will be permitted, but after the last scheduled one Oct. 13-14, that practice will end.

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