Ordinance to clear up regulations for food trucks in South Bend expected at next council meeting

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By: Kara Berg
kberg@flavor574.com

Photo supplied/The Wiener Shack

While the ordinance explaining food truck regulations was expected to be presented at the July 13 South Bend Common Council meeting, that date has been pushed due to some details that need to be sorted out.

Chris Fielding, assistant executive director for the Department of Community Investments, said his group now hopes to bring the ordinance to the council by the meeting Monday, July 27.

Currently in South Bend, there aren’t any laws that say specifically what food trucks can and can’t do. Fielding and Common Council member at large Gavin Ferlic, among others, have been working to change that by creating an ordinance to specify some rules of engagement for food trucks.

Those working on the ordinance spoke to the Common Council at their meeting July 13 to update them on the progress. 

One of the main questions holding the ordinance back is the fee for acquiring a food truck permit, Fielding said.  

“We wanted to make sure what we were charging was equal with what other communities our size have done,” Fielding said. “We don’t want to be too high or too low.” 

Those working on the ordinance have been conducting a study looking at what other communities across the country do with food truck permits.

Another big issue they’ve had is deciding how trucks should display the permits.

Fielding said they tossed around ideas like hanging it from the rear view mirror, but that would make it too easy to move from truck to truck. Instead, they want to find something more permanent, like a decal sticker that would rip if removed. 

These, and other questions people keep coming to the group with, have set back the goal date to have the ordinance finished. 

Fielding said his team wants to make sure they have the answers to as many questions as possible. 

“I’m sure (the council) will still have a few (questions), but nothing I believe we couldn’t answer,” Fielding said. 
 

Follow reporter Kara Berg on Twitter at @karaberg95
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