When the City Council opened public testimony on the draft rules for mobile food carts and trucks at their public hearing last month, it became clear pretty quickly that a little more time and effort was needed to work through the details and polish the regulations before they would be ready to put into place, especially for vendors hoping to vend in public areas (such as along streets and public plazas) within the downtown area. With assistance of industry groups such as the Greater Spokane Food Truck Association, Spokane Chapter of the Washington Restaurant Association, Greater Spokane Incorporated and the Downtown Spokane Partnership, City staff and the Council office met with stakeholders numerous times over the course of the month finally settling on a revised draft that will be presented to Council for consideration at their June 23, 2014 meeting.
Part of the compromise reached was the way in which vendors receive approval for vending locations. The revisions will allow vendors to set up and vend at any location where a property owner has already indicated that they are agreeable to having vendors locate on the street adjacent to their property. City staff and the Downtown Spokane Partnership have agreed to work together with downtown property owners to identify the agreeable owners and make that information available to interested vendors. In addition, the parking rules will be relaxed to allow vendors to pay meters for as much time as is needed to set up and vend at a metered parking space. In most cases, it was found that the two hour time limit typical of metered parking spaces downtown simply did not allow enough time for vendors to operate. A copy of the revised proposal is available via the link below.
The public hearing will take place during the legislative session of the Council meeting starting at 6:00pm on Monday, June 23, 2014 in the City Council Chambers, City Hall. Citizens and interested persons are invited to testify at the hearing and/or submit written comments.
The goal of the project is to create a more consistent, predictable, and streamlined system for the local mobile food vendor industry.