The City of Newton requires a permit for any person representing themselves, any business, organization, or group soliciting or attempting to solicit from residences in the public right-of-way or street. These people may seek monies, contributions, or orders for goods, subscriptions, services, or merchandise to be delivered immediately or later.
Solicitors are required to display their permits. The City of Newton's solicitation hours are 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. on Saturdays. No soliciting/peddling is allowed on Sundays.
The City code allows for license exemptions, including nonprofit organizations such as local Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Campfire, 4-H clubs, FFA, and similar nationally recognized nonprofit organizations and students representing local schools, including youth sports organizations and religious organizations. (Newton City Code 111.04).
For a list of active solicitor permits, visit the City's website: www.newtongov.org/currentsolicitors.
When issuing a solicitors permit, the City only verifies that the applicant is who they claim to be and is not convicted of a felony, offense, crime, or violation in the state of Iowa involving the following:
- theft or fraud, sexual abuse, or a crime requiring sex offender registration
- force, violence or moral turpitude,
- any violation of any law relating to the act of soliciting.
- The City does not validate or endorse any products or services being offered and encourages residents to exercise discretion when dealing with solicitors. It is important to be confident in an organization before donating or making a purchase from someone unknown.
In addition, the Newton Police Department offers the following guidelines when dealing with a solicitor at your home:
- Ask to see the original city-issued permit with the City of Newton seal (copies are not valid) and photo identification (driver's license). All solicitors are required to carry the permit and provide it upon request.
- Avoid allowing solicitors in your home. Have them remain outside during their visit.
- Avoid being duped. Non-reputable solicitors may tell fictitious stories to make a sale or secure a donation.
If uncomfortable with a solicitor, contact the Newton Police Department at (641) 791-0850.
If you have further questions about the permitting process, don't hesitate to get in touch with the City Clerk's office at (641) 792-2787.