Alabama Town Demands Teenagers Get Business Licenses in Order to Mow Lawns

Summer jobs for teens just aren’t what they used to be in these United States.

It seems that one city in Alabama has decided that local kids who want to mow lawns as a way of making a few bucks can only do so legally if they get business licenses.


In Gardendale, as in municipalities all across the country, local laws require that those who choose to run some kind of an enterprise must have a business license.

Nothing shocking about that, in general; even some of the most ardent anti-government types have no problem with cities and towns requiring business licenses.

What is surprising is that Gardendale is going to the extent of demanding that local kids who want to cut neighbors’ lawns for a few bucks – an activity once seen as a rite of passage for teens in America – will need to secure a business license.

It appears that local lawn care companies in Gardendale are partly behind the city government’s push to crack down on kids who cut grass without the proper credentials, according to WBMA.

Resident Elton Campbell has a granddaughter who mows the lawns of her neighbors.

“One of the men that cuts several yards made a remark to one of our neighbors that ‘if he saw her cutting grass again that he was going to call Gardendale’ because she didn’t have a business license,” said Campbell.

Adding insult to injury is the cost of the license – $110. For many young kids doing lawns here and there for summer work, that’s a whole lot of money.

Gardendale’s mayor, Stan Hogeland, says that while everyone running a business within city limits must have a license, that mandate is not intended to apply to kids cutting lawns for neighbors.

“I would love to have something on our books that gave a more favorable response to that student out there cutting grass,” said Hogeland. “And see if there’s maybe a temporary license during the summer months that targets teenagers.”

For now, though, kids in Gardendale had better pony up that $110…or else.

The information contained here is for general information purposes only. The Financial Writer blog and Bob Yetman disclaim responsibility for any liability or loss incurred as a consequence of the use or application, either directly or indirectly, of any information presented herein. Nothing contained in this article, or any other article featured at this blog, should be construed as a solicitation or recommendation to engage in any financial transaction. You should seek the advice of a qualified professional before making any changes to your personal financial profile.

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