Worthington News

Garage-sale rules eased, but permit costs hiked from $2 to $5

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Garage-sale rules became a little more lenient, but the cost of a permit has gone up.

Worthington City Council voted 6-1 on May 19 to change the city's garage-sale code to permit more signs to be posted in the neighborhood near the sale and to issue permits up until the day before the sale.

The changes also mean increases in the cost of a permit, which went from $2 to $5.

Previously, garage-sale signs were permitted only on the property where the sale was held and only on the day of the sale.

The amended code permits the on-premise sign to go up the night before the sale and permits two off-premises signs on the day of the sale. However, those signs may not be posted in the public right of way, or be affixed to street signs, utility poles, trees, fences, buildings or any other objects.

"Holy smoke, what are you going to do with the sign?" council member Bob Chosy asked during the meeting.

The answer: Place it in a private yard after receiving the property owner's permission.

Signs posted illegally will continue to be removed by Worthington police.

Under the amended code, residents also may purchase a permit up to the day prior to the sale. Previously, permits were sold only up to seven days prior to the sale.

Some existing provisions continue.

One permit only may be issued for a single address in any 12-month period unless ownership of the address changes.

Permits are valid for not more than three consecutive days or two consecutive weekends of two days each.

Also, no sale is permitted after sunset.

Though the amended code loosens the city's garage-sale rules, the code itself does not sit well with Chosy, who cast the only dissenting vote on the changes.

He called the code oppressive, saying he believes the city still is pushing residents too hard.

"It's not necessary, and I really object to it," Chosy said.

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