By Jamie Wiggan
Kennedy commissioners approved a new ordinance May 13 requiring food trucks and other mobile food vendors to file for a permit before rolling into town to sell their eats. They also discussed difficulties surrounding the township’s annual Community Days celebration.
Before approving the ordinance, several commissioners said they’d seen increasing numbers of food trucks operating in the township.
Joseph Kulik, township solicitor, said the new permit requirement will give the township control over when and where mobile food vendors operate so they can safeguard residents and other business owners.
“[Without permits] the township is losing money, the township is losing control, and it affects businesses,” Kulik said.
“…Now you have an ordinance, if someone’s not doing it you can shut them down.”
Kulik added that the permits require vendors to satisfy insurance and health permit requirements and can also be enforced to ensure local restaurants are not undercut by the presence of a nearby mobile unit.
The one-time permit fee is set at $45 dollars. Vendors will have to obtain new permits for each day they operate. Permits will also be required if residents host food trucks for private parties and gatherings.
The board of commissioners approved the motion unanimously.
Also during the meeting, Kennedy officials discussed the status of the annual Community Days festival, saying its likely to be reduced in scope or canceled altogether this year.
Responding to a resident question, Mel Weinstein, treasurer and interim manager, said the township had planned to resume the full event this year but was left in the lurch when their regular amusement supplier pulled out at late notice.
Weinstein said he’s been in contact with another supplier but they would only be able to supply up to three rides. At the time of the May 13 meeting, Weinstein said it was undecided whether they would move forward with a reduced event or hold off entirely this year.
“We got the call last Friday,” Weinstein said. “We’ll see what happens.”