Good Samaritan faces fine for feeding the hungry

Published Wednesday, August 15, 2012 / The Five

This is a rush transcript from "The Five," August 15, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

ANDREA TANTAROS, CO-HOST: Well, Philadelphia's nickname is the City of Brotherly Love, a community that helps one another. That is one honorable resident has been living up to.

Angela Prattis has been giving free lunches every day to poor kids in her neighborhood in the summer. But now if she keeps it up, she could be fined -- get this -- for not clearing the food give-away with the local government.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANGELA PRATTIS, FEEDS THE HUNGRY IN PHILLY: They could be doing a whole lot of other things. You have houses here, roofs are falling in. And -- I mean, they could be focused on a lot more serious issues than me feeding children.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

TANTAROS: Absolutely! Dana, I guess tons of e-mailed flowed in, so now the city, Mayor Nutter actually stood behind her. The city said, wait a minute, we're not going to fine you. You still have to pay $1,000 to go in front of the board and get a permit.

We're not going to fine you $600 a day. It's this just government regulating every area of our lives, even do-gooders.

DANA PERINO, CO-HOST: And thing that struck me when reading is that another resident alerted the council about the distribution. You would not want to be that person's friend, whoever alerted the council because she was doing something that was kind.

TANTAROS: Right.

And, Eric, this isn't a neighborhood that is affluent and some snob calls up and says I don't want this going on.

This is neighborhood where the kids need help. The average income is about $19,000 a year. This woman used to do the giveaways at the local church, but she had a baby. So she is bouncing a baby and giving out lunches.

Can the city give her a pass?

ERIC BOLLING, CO-HOST: Two things, number one, Mayor Nutter, what he tried to do is he said no feeding homeless independently because he was trying to literally starve the homeless in to shelters to get other forms of assistance, whether they need medical care, psychiatric care, whatever -- ridiculous program. Mayor Nutter should let this woman help kids who need help.

The other thing is does she still have to pay 1,000 bucks?

PERINO: For a permit.

BOLLING: I'll do it. Find out where it is, check is in the mail tomorrow morning.

KIMBERLY GUILFOYLE, CO-HOST: I love it.

PERINO: I'm going in front of a board next week and I need $5,000.

TANTAROS: I'm going over to Bloomingdales to dos some charity work. I need $5,000.

BOLLING: I'm being very serious. It's a good cause. We'll send it from "The Five."

TANTAROS: Bob, play devil's advocate a little bit. Does the city need to keep with all the zoning law, though?

BECKEL: I don't understand -- first of all, it's nice of you to do. I don't get it. Churches can do these things, feed the homeless without permits. I do a program or did a program living in Washington down in the square where we didn't have permits. We just put baloney and cheese sandwiches together and gave them out. We didn't have a permit.

I mean, if people are willing to feed people, food that is not, you know, loaded with poison or something let them eat. These people are hungry. I mean, get this through your head.

All the other services are wonderful, but if they're hungry they need to eat.

TANTAROS: Isn't there a bigger point, too. That the government is telling poor people where they can and cannot eat?

GUILFOYLE: Well, they're telling poor people and they're telling poor people and children you can starve. If you don't have the proper zoning, hearing, or ordinance, I'm sorry, you're violating the rules so go to bed hungry. It's just really ridiculous. I mean, she should be given some kind of dispensation.

PERINO: She should have gotten a key to the city.

GUILFOYLE: Where have we come now as a society that this is the type of regulations and rules? You can't hand lemonade stand. You can't feed homeless hungry children.

It's really wrong in every way.

BECKEL: What kind of message does it send to anybody else who wants to do it, right?

GUILFOYLE: Right. That you'll be penalized punished.

BECKEL: You can't do it because you're going to be punished. So, you hold back.

TANTAROS: Government wants to control every aspect, even poverty.

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