Pest Control Company Sues Over Colleyville Solicitation Ordinance

City ordinance prohibits door-to-door solicitation after 4 p.m.

A pest control company is fighting a Colleyville ordinance that prevents it from soliciting homeowners after 4:30 p.m.

In a federal lawsuit filed late Friday, Moxie Pest Services said it makes most of its sales through door-to-door solicitation, typically between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m., but that the vast majority of sales happen after 4:30 p.m.

"Most people don't even get home until far after 4:30," owner Tim Headrick said.

"In pest control, we're coming into their homes, right, getting to know the family, finding out what the solution is," he said. "It's much easier for a family to feel comfortable with that when they get to know us right."

But many Colleyville residents support the ordinance, which also prohibits solicitation before 9 a.m. and requires companies to obtain a solicitation permit from the city.

"I think people need some family life and they don't need strangers knocking at the door, disturbing their family life, really any time of day," Deanna Unerfusser said.

"I think there's enough hours in the day to come to a homeowner, knock on the door and talk to them as long as it's within the defined hours -- I think that's plenty of time," Mike Fuller said.

City attorney Matthew Boyle said Colleyville would "vigorously defend" the ordinance.

"The city's ordinance serves as a valid means of regulating the time, place and manner of commercial speech," he said.

Moxie Pest Services said it wants a court order to stop the city from enforcing the ordinance.

"We just would like the ability to go out and get business the best way we know how and establish these relationships unhindered in a way that's respectful of the community," Headrick said.

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