Food Truck Owners Decry City's Ping-Pong Permitting Process at Forum
SAN ANGELO, TX -- Food truck owners passionately condemned the process of getting a permit to operate in San Angelo at a forum held by city staff Tuesday evening.
The 90-minute meeting focused on the challenges food truck owners face in getting multiple permits to operate including a permit from the health department, the fire department and the police department among others. City staff told those in attendance they have a checklist for vendors.
Several food truck owners complained about the process of having to go to multiple offices to complete the permitting process. One food truck owner said it was a ping pong process and that description was echoed by others.
Lonestar Cheeseburger owner Tim Condon said it was the most ridiculous thing he’d ever seen. City attorney Theresa James said the city is already looking at ways to streamline the process and the purpose of the forum was to gather input from food truck owners and the public and rewrite the ordinance.
Food truck owners also asked about setting up in city parks and at Lake Nasworthy and at churches.
Downtown San Angelo Executive Director Del Velasquez said food trucks downtown at night cause parking problems and trash has increased. City staff told food truck owners they have to follow parking ordinances just like everyone else. They can’t take up more than one space and they have to park at an angle if there is angle parking. Food truck owners asked for the city for a little leeway because some of them have trailers and they take up more than one space.
Several food truck owners wanted to know why they are prohibited from setting up in the coliseum parking lot during the rodeo. Parks and Recreation Director Carl White said they have a contract with a vendor for the coliseum and they would have to modify that contract to allow food trucks there.
Mayor Brenda Gunter asked city staff to take input from the forum and rewrite the ordinance then hold another forum and share that information with the public again before taking it to the city council for adoption.