Food truck offerings expanding: Council to discuss ordinance regulating where business can be done

After more than a month’s delay, Seymour Common Council is scheduled to vote tonight on an ordinance to regulate when and where food trucks can do business in the city.

With the success of Food Truck Fridays in the Walnut Street Parking Lot, more and more mobile food businesses are wanting to set up and are seeking permits and guidance from city hall.

At the May 25 meeting of the board of public works and safety, members approved the operation of two more food trucks, The Lunch Box from Crothersville and Haywood BBQ of Freetown, from 5 to 8 p.m. on Fridays in the city-owned parking lot through the end of June. They join Flying Pink Pig BBQ and Nacho Momma’s Mexican food.

The proposed new ordinance requires food truck operators to obtain a $50 mobile food vehicle license from the city good for one year instead of a peddler and solicitors license, which are valid for a shorter period of time.

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According to the regulations, food trucks will not be allowed to park in city parking lots without first getting approval from the board of works. They also can not operate within 50 feet of a brick and mortar restaurant and within one block of a special event or festival without prior consent to do so.

Other rules are food trucks “may not operate in such a way that would endanger the safety or property of the public.” They also may not park within 20 feet of a bus stop, crosswalk, driveway, alleyway, building entrance or within 15 feet of a fire hydrant.

A copy of the entire ordinance is available at city hall and will be accessible online if approved.

The discussion about food trucks began in April when Councilman Shawn Malone said the city needed to be able to better regulate them.

Malone also owns of Brooklyn Pizza Co. on West Second Street.

“I feel there needs to be designated areas for them,” he said in April. “Whenever I go to another community, Nashville or Indianapolis, where there are food trucks, they are always in a designated area.”

Tonight’s council meeting begins at 7 p.m. in council chambers at city hall and is open to the public.

If you go

What: Seymour City Council meeting

When: 7 p.m. today

Where: City Hall, 301-309 N. Chestnut St.

On the agenda: Second and final reading of an ordinance providing for licensing of mobile food vehicles.

Christine Matheu of Matheu Architects will present plans developed from a recent feasibility study completed on the Old Federal Building at the corner of Chestnut and Third streets, which is being renovated for use as a city museum.

Discussion for proposed improvements to the Von Fange Ditch.

Tax abatement request from Excel Manufacturing.

Approval of tax increment financing through the Seymour Redevelopment Commission for the development of a $3.5 million downtown park in the 100 block of East Tipton Street.

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January Rutherford is a reporter for The (Seymour) Tribune. She can be reached at jrutherford@tribtown.com or 812-523-7069.