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Charites might be able to “fill the boot” again soon

Flickr User Andrew Malone

A ruling that outraged charities in Michigan could be overturned. The state Senate passed a bill Wednesday to bring back roadside donation collections.

Last August the attorney general nixed roadside donation collections. He said they were illegal.

This shut down a lucrative way for charities to get donations. 

Monty Nye is with the Michigan Professional Firefighters Union. He says their donations for the Muscular Dystrophy Association got cut in half last year. That’s because they weren’t able to do their annual “fill the boot” drive.

“We have people every year we get out there say ‘oh you’re here, we’ve been waiting for you all summer’.”

“We aren’t out there being, you know demanding money, give us money. We’re out there, we’re being pleasant. If they don’t give we’re saying hello, you know, how are you today – have a great day. It’s not high pressure why we’re out there.”

But, local governments want to be able to say what roads can be used.

Judy Allen is with the Michigan Townships Association.

“There are just some instances where it would not logically be safe to anyone in that intersection.”

The bill in its current form gives local governments some control over where charities can solicit.

Senator Tom Casperson says they want to keep it safe, and give local governments some control.

“They feel an intersection is too dangerous, too heavily traveled, traffic’s going to fast; they have a right to say no to that particular spot.”

The bill needs another vote in the state House before it can hit the governor’s desk.