PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — The Panama City Police Department is partnering with businesses by placing stickers on business windows throughout downtown Panama City to prevent loitering, littering and trespassing.

Police can tell if the store has signed a trespassing letter with the police department, which allows them to move people off the business’ property. 

“It allows for the police officer, if they respond here and there’s some type of issue that is taking place, they can take the enforcement,” Panama City Police Chief Mark Smith said. “The business has already established a letter with us, saying that we can act on their behalf.”

PCPD expects the program to increase efficiency in preventing trespassing. Prior to the stickers, officers had to ensure that someone was not allowed on store property before removing them.

“One of the big things that they deal with is the litter that is left behind,” Smith said. “And that is one of the things that we will be able to address more easily. Because it is private property.”

Business owners believe the new policy will improve safety.

“We’ve got customers in here that are panhandled against,” Kevin Mitchell, owner of “The Press,” said. “They’re trying to collect money from them and there are several businesses around town who have had some issues in the past with loitering around the property.”

On Wednesday three businesses received “no trespassing” stickers.

“If anyone is hanging out and they shouldn’t be hanging out, the process of having them trespass is much easier now,” Samantha Culver, owner of Elevation Salon said.

Smith hopes to expand the signs throughout Panama City, after using Harrison Ave. as a “pilot”.