Tags Posts tagged with "Lawsuit"

Lawsuit

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HOBOKEN, NJ – Taco Truck has until Dec. 23 to answer a lawsuit accusing it of overworking and underpaying a Hoboken employee.

the taco truck

Former Taco Truck employee, Jonathan Velazquez, lobbed a proposed collective action against the business alleging he logged upwards of 70 hours per week without being paid overtime, according to court records. Velazquez filed the suit Oct.14 in New Jersey federal court, which names the Taco Truck, CEO Jason Scott and COO Chris Viola.

The most recent court filings indicate that the restaurant has until Dec. 23 to file a response to the complaint.

Velazquez alleges in the suit that he routinely worked six days a week for 70 to 80 hours without being properly paid for the overtime hours, in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act and the New Jersey State Wage and Hour Law. Sometimes Velazquez had to sleep in the restaurant’s food truck because he worked too many hours, his attorney, Andrew Glenn, said Monday.

According to the complaint, he worked as a salaried cashier, driver and cook from February 2013 to September 2013. Velazquez made roughly $615 a week, Glenn said.

CEO Jason Scott said that Velazquez was fired after a series of breaches of company policy. Glenn said that his client believes that he was wrongfully terminated for complaining he needed to sleep in the company’s truck because he worked so many hours.

In a statement, Scott and Viola said that Taco Truck complies with state and federal wage and hour laws. They also said that the company sets high standards for employee policies and gauges Taco Truck’s success through “happy and loyal” customers and employees.

“We find it regrettable that one former manager has decided to file a lawsuit against our company,” they said in a statement. “We dispute his claims, which we believe have no merit.”

They declined to comment further, as the lawsuit is ongoing.

Find the entire article by Kathryn Brenzel at nj.com <here>

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wandering dago
Image from alloveralbany.com

ALBANY, NY - The question of whether the Wandering Dago will find a home on property controlled by the state might end up being settled in federal court.

The owners of the Schenectady-based food truck — as controversial for its name as it is beloved for its pulled-pork sandwiches — filed suit Tuesday against the New York Racing Association and the state Office of General Services. Brandon Snooks and Andrea Loguidicesay they were unfairly bounced from a spot at Saratoga Race Course in July, two months after being denied a chance to sell their wares on Empire State Plaza.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Albany, names among its defendants NYRA’s new president and CEO, Christopher Kay; OGS Commissioner RoAnn Destito; and Destito’s deputy, Joseph Rabito. The suit also names “John Does 1-5″ — slots that could end up being occupied by high-ranking but so far anonymous state officials whom the suit describes as the real source of the Wandering Dago’s troubles.

Snooks and Loguidice insist they intended the truck’s name to be a tribute to the hardworking Italian-Americans of previous generations who toiled as day laborers. A recent online poll they conducted found clear majority support for retaining the name. Their critics, however, see “dago” as an unreconstructed ethnic slur.

The owners are represented by Albany attorney George Carpinello of the high-profile firm Boies, Schiller & Flexner — and yes, he’s of Italian descent (“on both sides”).

“We live in a society with robust speech,” Carpinello said, “and you’re going down a slippery slope when you allow public officials to say ‘I’m going to ban this because a certain segment of society finds it offensive.'”

Carpinello, a former Albany Law School professor who in 2008 was shortlisted as a candidate to become the state’s chief judge, has handled similar cases involving businesses that pushed the boundaries of good taste. He represented a brewer that had run afoul of New York state regulators for marketing Bad Frog Beer, which bore a label showing an amphibian giving a familiar one-fingered salute. A similar case in Massachusetts involved a distributor that was selling Bad Elf Beer and Santa’s Butt Winter Porter.

Find the entire article by Casey Seiler at timesunion.com <here>

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beavers donutsEVANSTON, IL - After months spent in a legal back-and-forth, the dispute between Evanston and food truck Beavers Coffee and Donuts is now back where it all started.

A Cook County judge ruled Tuesday the case would proceed after several steps slowed down its progress.

Beavers initially filed a lawsuit against the city in August to protest a city ordinance mandating that mobile food vendors have a licensed, brick-and-mortar food establishment within city limits.

Evanston subsequently filed a motion to dismiss the case on the grounds that Beavers owners James Nuccio and Gabriel Wiesen had never actually applied for an operating license. After a Cook County judge sided with Evanston in January, Beavers officially applied in March for a license to operate in the city. The city denied Beavers’ application in April, citing the fact that Nuccio and Wiesen didn’t own a licensed food establishment in Evanston. Because the city denied Beavers’ application, a judge ruled the case would proceed.

Evanston has until June 4 to file a response to Beavers’ amended complaint, and the court will hold a status hearing on the case June 18, Beavers’ lawyer Jacob Huebert said.

Find the original article by Ciara McCarthy at the Daily Northwestern <here>

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EVANSTON, IL - A judge has dismissed the suit between a Chicago-based food truck and the city of Evanston.

beavers donutsThe five-month case between Beavers Coffee and Donuts and Evanston, however, might continue. The food truck has 60 days to file an amended complaint, an opportunity that co-owner Gabriel Wiesen said the company would definitely take.

Beavers filed a suit with the Cook County Circuit Court against the city in August to challenge Evanston’s mobile food vehicle vendors ordinance. The law requires all such vendors to apply for a license before operating within the city, and licenses can only be granted to vendors that have a physical restaurant within city limits.

Beavers Coffee and Donuts recently opened a permanent storefront in Chicago, although it has no affiliated restaurant in Evanston. Beaver’s argues the policy is unconstitutional because it is discriminatory toward certain businesses.

In an email to Evanston media, city attorney Grant Farrar announced Judge Mary Anne Mason had granted Evanston’s motion to dismiss the case Tuesday.

“Judge Mason immediately agreed with the City’s arguments that Plaintiffs’ lawsuit is not ripe for the Court’s review,” Farrar wrote.

The city argued in its dismissal motion that Beaver’s never submitted an application for an operating license, Wiesen said, adding that Beaver’s did not submit the application for a reason.

“We met with the health inspector with an application in hand, and he told us there was no point in applying,” he said.

Find the entire article by Ciara McCarthy at The Daily Northwestern <here>

 

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EVANSTON, IL - The lawsuit between the City of Evanston and a Chicago food truck service will go to court Jan. 29.

beavers donuts

Beaver’s Coffee and Donuts sued the city in August for prohibiting them from operating as a mobile food vendor. The Cook County Circuit Court set the court date in late November.

An Evanston ordinance restricts food truck owners from selling their products within the city unless they own a physical restaurant.

Beavers Donuts co-owner Gabriel Wiesen said the ordinance hurts small businesses and residents.

“I think (the city is) doing a disservice to the citizens of Evanston by denying them potential revenue and denying them consumer choice,” Wiesen said.

When he started the doughnut truck with a partner in 2012, Wiesen said he thought Evanston would be a perfect market because the city is one of the few Illinois municipalities that allow mobile cooking trucks.

The doughnut truck has operated at NU events such as Dillo Day and several student-run fundraisers.

With so many students in the city, the Beavers owners decided to explore how to get a license to operate in the city, Wiesen said. Without the license, the truck could only operate for specific events.

Wiesen said they attempted to satisfy the city requirement by partnering with an Evanston bakery so the truck would sell products from both businesses. But the city told them the arrangement wouldn’t work because Beavers must be the actual owners of an establishment.

The owners then filed a lawsuit in August, after they were approached by Jacob Huebert, an attorney with Liberty Justice Center, a non-profit litigation center.

The city filed a motion to dismiss the case in October, arguing the Beaver owners cannot sue Evanston because they did not actually apply for a license.

Find the entire article by Olga Gonzalez Latapi at The Daily Northwestern <here>

 

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Institute-for-Justice-logoCHICAGO, IL –  You may have missed the food truck news, but the Chicago Machine is about to be tested. Yesterday we reported that the Institute of Justice is filing a suit against the city of Chicago today to challenge the current legislation that was created in part to allow cooking on food trucks, but at the same time, it was developed to protect restaurants from these mobile food competitors.

This new legislation has been in place since July, but this is the first attempt to have the protectionist language removed. This will allow food truck owners to navigate the city providing Chicagoans much more culinary choice.

Please watch and share this video to get a better understanding of the situation facing Windy City Food Truck Owners:

If you want to help these owners, be sure to share this story and others relating to this situation through social media. To keep the message from becoming fragmented, use the hashtag “#freethefoodtrucks” when you spread the word.

 

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Burke v. City of Chicago: Should the city of Chicago be in the business of protecting restaurants from food trucks?

Institute-for-Justice-logo

That is the question to be answered by a major lawsuit to be filed tomorrow, Wednesday, November 14, 2012, in Cook County Circuit Court by the Institute for Justice (IJ)—a national public interest law firm—and three Chicago-area food truck entrepreneurs. 

Cities nationwide are experiencing the benefits of food trucks.  But for years Chicago had not embraced that movement.  For example, Chicago did not allow cooking on food trucks and it told food truck entrepreneurs that they must stay more than 200 feet from brick-and-mortar restaurants.  So in June 2012, when the city announced it would be revising its vending laws, food fans were excited.

The law that passed in July, however, continues to make it illegal for food trucks to operate within 200 feet of any fixed business that serves food.  The fines for violating the 200-foot rule are up to $2,000—ten times higher than for parking in front of a fire hydrant.  Further, the city is forcing food trucks to install GPS tracking devices that broadcast the trucks’ every move.  According to the Chicago Tribune, “the ordinance doesn’t serve the needs of the lunch-seeking public. It benefits the brick-and-mortar eateries, whose owners don’t want the competition.”

The Institute for Justice is the nation’s leading legal advocate for the rights of entrepreneurs.  For more on the lawsuit and IJ’s National Street Vending Initiative, visit www.ij.org/vending.

 

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MONROVIA, CA - After spending $140,000 on defending food-truck restrictions – including a ban from doing business in Old Town – the city has agreed to a comeback for the popular mobile vendors and settled a lawsuit brought by the SoCal Mobile Food Vendors Association.

OTW Logo

“We’re very happy with the outcome, and we’re really hoping to be able to continue to work cooperatively, like we have with many municipalities, to bring their laws in compliance with state law,” said Jeffrey Dermer, attorney for the SoCal Mobile Vendors Association, which represents some 150 gourmet food trucks.

“State law says you can only regulate mobile vending for public safety purposes and especially not for protectionism and not aesthetics,” he said.

The city has agreed to ease the restrictions and to pay $75,000 of the Association’s attorney fees in addition to the $140,000 in defending the suit, according to the City Clerk’s office.

Monrovia Mayor Mary Ann Lutz said the City Council will soon consider a revised ordinance for approval.

Find the entire article at pasadenastarnews.com <here>

 

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