Members of the Charleston City Council are discussing the possibility of prohibiting businesses from handing out free samples to individuals on the streets.
The ordinance on the ban to prevent the distribution of free samples to passersby would affect businesses on and around King Street – from Line Street to Broad Street.
Supporters of the ban include Mayor John Tecklenburg, Councilmen William Dudley Gregorie, and Keith Waring. While Councilmen Kevin Shealy and Harry Griffin have voiced their concerns over how it might hurt local businesses.
Meg Thompson, Director of Business and Neighborhood Services, said, “Vendors who do participate in the sampling are often perceived as aggressive. Patrons no longer feel safe walking and feel they have to walk across the street in order to avoid this aggressive behavior.”
The proposal was recently heard by a new commission, the Central Business District Improvement Commission, which has already identified a variety of other issues it will soon address.
The City Council will discuss this new ordinance at their next meeting.