The city of Worcester, Massachusetts' legal fight to defend its ban on panhandling has cost an additional $475,000.
The Telegram & Gazette reports that the city cut a check for that amount last week to attorneys for the American Civil Liberties Union who successfully sued to overturn local ordinances against aggressive panhandling.
The payment was $45,000 less than a federal judge had ordered the city to pay in plaintiffs' legal fees. City Manager Edward Augustus Jr. said the city negotiated the lower amount.
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The city in January 2013 adopted two ordinances to control panhandling. One barred begging "in an aggressive manner" and prohibited soliciting within 20 feet of public places; a second prohibited panhandling from traffic islands and roads.
Federal courts ruled the ordinances were violations of constitutional free speech rights.