Bobby Brunner had to pay $35 for a permit to give donated food to needy families at an upcoming York City event in September.
A few weeks later, dozens of people marching in the city's Oct. 26 Halloween parade will likely toss candy to kids.
But they won't have to cough up any money first. Mayor Kim Bracey has apparently waived the permit and fee requirement for parade participants, though she did not respond to multiple requests for comment.
That's a change from last year, when marchers who wanted to throw candy had to first comply with a city ordinance governing food distribution at special events by filling out a form and giving York City $35.
Unsurprisingly, not too many people threw candy at last year's parade, said Adam Nugent, special events coordinator for the York Revolution, which is organizing the event again this year.
"It's something that we got a lot of feedback from last year," Nugent said.
The change: So, the company approached Bracey to request some changes to that process this year. They reached an agreement.
"We are actually paying the fee," Nugent said. "But it's been waived for the folks who are actually participating."
For a single $35 fee paid by the Revolution, all parade participants can toss candy to kids — as long as they submit their sugary goodies to a health inspection first.
Brunner, who hosts regular charity giveaways through the nonprofit Neighbors Helping Neighbors he founded in 2009, said he's glad parade marchers are catching a break.
But, he said, the waiver should extend to anyone who wants to simply give away food within York City.
"I believe there would be a lot more help coming to York if we keep politics out of the pockets of the people trying to help," Brunner said.
Petition drive: Last week, Brunner criticized the mayor for denying his request for a waiver to distribute food at Albemarle Park on Sept. 6.
Bracey had waived the fee for previous events, he said.
Brunner said he's collecting signatures for a petition to repeal the permit requirement.
When he has 10,000 signatures, Brunner said, he'll take his case to the York City Council.
In the meantime, the mayor's decision to waive the fee for parade participants was a good one, Brunner said.
"Little kids love getting candy," he said.