BENNINGTON (AP) -- The Vermont town of Bennington is considering an ordinance that would ban panhandling on its sidewalks and public spaces.

The Select board discussed the ordinance at a meeting on Monday night.

Town Manager Stuart Hurd said the town stepped in after representatives of the Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce and the Better Bennington Corp. raised concerns about "people soliciting funds on the street or in parking lots."

The ordinance would make it illegal to solicit anyone on the sidewalk, at an automated teller machine or in other public spaces. Violators would face fines but would not be charged with a crime.

Some select board members showed support for the ordinance while others said they weren't sure it was needed.


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