Recently increased enforcement of San Francisco's solicitation laws has left many tour bus companies with close to a thousand dollars in fines. You see, it's illegal for tour buses to solicit on the sidewalk, which means the alternative is a potential customer boarding a bus to discuss ticket prices. As the SF Appeal's April Siese puts it, "Yeah, that doesn't sound awkward/creepy AT ALL." Which means "that tour buses must conduct their business in secret," reports KCBS. FIrst-time offenders are receiving fines of $250. After that, the price jumps as high as $750 on the second citation, and $1,000 on the third.
One of the officers writing the tickets is a former cable car gripman and 10-time champion of the Cable Car Bell-Ringing Contest. "Union Square is the only little green area we have in downtown San Francisco. Why would they want to surround the park with smelly, stinky tour buses?" he told KCBS. He has a point.
· "Smelly, Stinky" Tour Bus Ticket Crackdown in Union Square [SF Appeal]
· Taking On Tour Buses In San Francisco’s Union Square [KCBS]
[Photo via Sergio]