Should mobile food trucks be allowed in Bonita Springs?
CREATED Dec. 13, 2012
BONITA SPRINGS, Fla.- Should the city tell mobile food vendors where they set up shop? That is the question swirling around Bonita Springs. Some vendors fear any changes could hurt them.
Rick Price poured more than $100,000 dollars into his business, Hungry Hound Dawgs. He runs the hot dog stand on Old 41 Road in Bonita Springs. He says business has been good lately.
"We bring in people that have never been in this area. Quite frankly, they told me they've never been on Old 41."
But now mobile food vendors like Price fear a proposed city ordinance could make it difficult to do business. Right now, there are zero rules. Vendors just need a food license. A few trucks have already set up shop around the city.
"It would put us out of business without being grandfathered in or giving us some special allowance to be here," said Price.
City Council and the city's Planning Agency is talking about putting restrictions on vendors to reduce the number of food trucks and reduce any impact on restaurants.
"What we're being protective of here is that there's not so many of them that it actually becomes a deterrent to redevelopment, there's alot of vacancies so why don't you rent a place," suggested Mayor Ben Nelson.
But vendors tell me mobile trucks bring a new flavor to Bonita and it's easier than renting a place.
"What would happen to the current vendors?" Fox asked Mayor Nelson.
"All depends, this can be crafted anyway. We could grandfather the current vendors in." 16:53
This issue goes back to the board next month(January). Mayor Nelson feels restrictions are needed, but is not sure just how strict the city will get.