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Afton gives politicians a free pass to march, but limits numbers

Politicians will get a break in this year's Afton Fourth of July Parade.

Last year, Afton City Council started charging politicians a fee of $50 to march in the city's annual Fourth of July Parade. However, City Council was informed during its June 19 meeting that Afton cannot charge politicians a higher fee than other parade participants.

Afton does not charge a fee for parade participants.

"You have to treat everybody equally," City Attorney Fritz Knaak said.

Council members said they will return the fees they have already received and issue a letter.

However, Afton City Council did agree to ask politicians for donations to help offset costs of the parade since the majority of trash picked up at the end of the parade are political stickers, fliers and information.

The Afton Fourth of July Committee also presented a proposal to limit political units to 10. But similar to the fee issue, the city can't limit the number of units unless they limit everyone, Knaak said.

Afton City Council did approve limiting parade supporters on the street to 10.

"That's fine as long as it's being applied uniformly," Knaak said.

Amber Kispert-Smith

Amber Kispert-Smith has been the schools and Afton reporter at the Woodbury Bulletin since 2008. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota. She previously worked as a reporter for Press Publications in White Bear Lake.

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