Councilor asks for review of food truck regulations

By TAYLOR MURCHISON-GALLAGHER

STAFF WRITER

A city counselor is looking to re-examine at how food trucks are regulated in the city.

At a special meeting on Aug. 27, Councilor Peter Kelley brought forth a request to have zoning regulations examined, and possibly amended, in regards to mobile vending units such as food trucks.

Kelley explained that there have been several complaints regarding zoning and the appropriate ordinances.

“A glaring example of how dated it is, is that it speaks to a food truck not being allowed on Main Street, North Main, and Riverside, so apparently, it would be allowed on Hope Street,” said Kelley. “And I’m being facetious, but that’s just an example of how dated that it is; and, we are sensitive to the brick and mortar establishments because they obviously have a lot of financial commitment and expenses, but we can’t lose sight of the food trucks and it’s something that all cities deal with nationwide.”

Mayor Ellen Zoppo-Sassu recommended the matter be referred to the Zoning Commission, as they have jurisdiction over zoning matters, and the council does not.

“There’s two main components — there’s that you cannot have accessory structures such as a picnic table or any type of seating arrangements, and that your mobile food vending cart has to be removed from premise and the end of every business day that’s creating a hardship for some of the food trucks,” said Zoppo-Sassu. “The food trucks, the bricks and mortar, anybody who is interested in this topic would then be able to go to the Zoning Commission and have them look at this from an amendment standpoint.”

The Zoning Commission meets on the second Wednesday of the month, at 7 p.m., in the Council Chambers of City Hall, 111 North Main Street.