A 7-year-old lemonade stand operator has been put out of business by the New York State Health Department.
The shutdown occurred after vendors at a nearby county fair complained he was undercutting their price, according to the New York Post.
The young entrepreneur, Brendan Mulvaney, was selling lemonade, water and Sno-cones from the porch of his family’s home, which just so happens to be right outside the Saratoga County Fair in upstate New York.
A woman wearing a Health Department T-shirt turned up Friday and shut it down because the family didn’t have a permit.
At first, officials said they couldn’t explain what happened because the Department of Health doesn’t regulate lemonade stands. The state agency — which does food inspections in much of upstate — even issued a public apology Sunday to Brendan “for any inconvenience.”
“We are working to better understand the situation but in the meantime want to assure the community that DOH does not issue permits for or oversee lemonade stands,” spokeswoman Jill Montag told the Albany Times Union.
But hours later, the bureaucrats did an about-face and declared a permit was indeed required, even for a stand on the Mulvaneys’ own porch.
“In the opinion of the inspector, the lemonade stand was in line with vendors inside the fair. He did not see any child,” DOH spokesman Gary Holmes said. “I have zero interest in creating conflict with a family, and certainly not a cute little kid.”
“It’s not about big government overreach; it’s about ensuring safe conditions.”
Brendan’s dad, Sean Mulvaney, fumed to the Times Union, “Yesterday, they issue an apology and today I need a permit.”
The permit costs $30 and is good for a year. Holmes said the DOH would expedite any application from the Mulvaneys.
The reversal left Brendan’s mom and dad frustrated, especially considering the stand had been operating for three years without incident.
“We’re just going to sit down as a family and figure out what we’re going to do here,” mom Jodi said. “It’s just what we did. It’s America.”
State Sen. Jim Tedisco (R-Saratoga) visited the kid’s stand Sunday afternoon and said the state government had gone haywire.
“There’s nothing that says America more than apple pie and kids running lemonade stands,” he said in a statement. “What has our state government come to?”
The youngster was charging 75 cents a cup for pre-mixed lemonade, while fresh-squeezed at the fair was going for about $7.
There was no immediate comment from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.
But, what can you really expect from a Governor who pardons hardened felons just to spite President Trump?
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo pardoned several criminals to help them avoid deportation.
Cuomo, a Democrat who is up for re-election this year, pardoned seven people who had criminal convictions ranging from petty larceny to drug possession, according to Fox News. Cuomo’s office confirmed the pardons.
“At a time when President Trump and the Federal government are waging a war on our immigrant communities, New York stands firm in our belief that our diversity is our greatest strength,” Cuomo said in a statement, according to Fox News.
“While President Trump engages in policies that rip children out of the arms of their mothers and tries to ramp up the deportation of New Yorkers to advance his political agenda of hate and division, we will protect our immigrant communities. With the Statue of Liberty in our harbor, New York will always stand against the hate coming out of Washington and instead serve as a beacon of hope and opportunity for all,” Cuomo said, according to Fox News.
Frank Barker, 43, was one of the seven pardoned by Cuomo, according to the governor’s office. Barker was convicted of criminal possession of stolen property and controlled substances and identity theft. The governor’s office stated those crimes were because of a drug addiction.
Fox News and Newsday reported the others who were pardoned:
Jose Rafael Cruz, 53, who was convicted of a sale of a controlled substance.
Ludames De La Cruz, 53, who was convicted for an attempted sale of a controlled substance.
Elpidio Rodriguez, 57, who was convicted of criminal possession of a controlled substance and being intoxicated while operating a motor vehicle 19 years ago.
Tamar Samuda, 35, who was convicted 17 years ago of assault and petty theft.
Marino Soto, 43, who was convicted of criminal possession of a controlled substance.
Carlos Suarez, 41, who was convicted of petty theft.
The spokeswoman for the Republican candidate challenging Cuomo criticized the pardons.
“Everything Andrew Cuomo does is for his own political benefit, regardless of whether it’s right, wrong or dangerous to the public,” said Katherine Delgado, a spokeswoman for Republican nominee Marc Molinaro, according to Newsday.
James E Windsor, Overpasses News Desk
July 31st, 2018