Bill moving through legislature would legalize lemonade stands in Iowa

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DES MOINES, Iowa (KCCI) - If you're a parent, you've probably proposed that your children set up a lemonade stand in summer.

(Image: Hefty Brands / MGN)

It's a basic way to teach kids about running a business, but did you know it's illegal in Iowa? According to television station KCCI, a bill moving through the Iowa Legislature could change that.

​Even Rep. Ray “Bubba” Sorenson was surprised to learn the iconic, innocent lemonade stand is against the law here. He has encouraged his two children to get out the cash register and make lemonade.

​“My two kids had a lemonade stand and donated $60 in profits they made to the park. Apparently, all of us have been operating lemonade stands illegally in Iowa,” Sorenson said.

​In Coralville, police shut down several stands because kids did not have permits or health inspections to run a food stand during RAGBRAI.

“We don't want headlines that say ‘Iowa police shut down lemonade stands.’ We’ve got better things to do with law enforcement," Sorenson said.

Lawmakers are looking to turn the sour experience into a positive one for kids.

The bill passed by the Iowa House would not require children to apply for business and food permits when selling baked goods or beverages, but parents would be liable if there is a problem.

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