BROWARD COUNTY, Fla. – Broward County commissioners unanimously approved a new county law during Tuesday's public hearing that will ban beggars, vendors and solicitors of any kind from operating in certain intersections with heavy traffic.
According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, 197 pedestrians were killed by vehicles in Broward County from 2011 to 2014. More than 2,000 pedestrians were killed throughout the state in the same period.
The anti-solicitation ordinance covers 20 major intersections located within unincorporated Broward County.
The intersections were determined by the Broward County Highway Construction and Engineering Division, which identified a list of the 20 highest traffic volume intersections within in the county.
Under the passed ordinance, solicitors and vendors will be prohibited at the following intersections:
State Road 84 and University Drive
State Road 84 and Flamingo Road
State Road 84 and Pine Island Road
Sunrise Boulevard and NW 31st Avenue
Sunrise Boulevard and NW 27th Avenue
Sunrise Boulevard and NW 24th Avenue
State Road 7 and SW 20th Street
State Road 84 and Davie Road
State Road 84 and 136th Avenue
Broward Boulevard and SW 27th Avenue
State Road 7 and Davie Boulevard
Broward Boulevard and NW 31st Avenue
State Road 84 and Nob Hill Road
Federal Highway (U.S. 1) and Griffin Road
Davie Boulevard/Davie Boulevard Extension and Peters Road
Peters Road and NW 46th Avenue
Coconut Creek Parkway/Hammondville Road and NW 3st Avenue
State Road 84 and Hiatus Road
NW 31st Avenue and NW 6th Street
NW 27th Avenue and NW 6th Street
Gary Richardson is a regular at State Road 84 and Nob Hill Road.
"Commissioners give me a break," he said.
Richardson makes a living begging for money.
"This is my living for right now until something comes up. I pray until something happens," he added.
Richardson holds a sign that says, "Imagine being homeless. Anything helps. God bless you."
He claims he can't get work and can make $100 a day at the intersection, but his intersection is on Broward County's hit list.
"It's unfair, these folks are so good to me. People out here help us, why take it away from us?" Richardson said.
Broward Commissioners call it a matter of safety.
"I believe they are trying to get the homeless population off the streets," said Richardson.
Local 10 News spotted a man who calls himself "Red" at the corner of Davie Boulevard and State Road 7.
He was among four different people begging in the median at this one intersection .
"We are not messing with no one. We ain't harassing no body, we ain't robbing no body," said Red.
The new county law affects homeless beggars and children, adolescents and adults collecting money for school and community activities.
Vendors selling flowers, fruit or any other items are also prohibited from operating in the 20 intersections.
Follow Jeff Weinsier on Twitter @jweinsier
Follow Local 10 News on Twitter @WPLGLocal10