GREEN COVE SPRINGS, FL – A few days after Hurricane Irma blasted through the town of Green Cove Springs, Florida, Jack Roundtree drove his Triple J’s BBQ truck downtown to give residents a hot lunch and hand out free bar-be-que to utility workers trying to get the power restored.

It didn’t take long for the cops to show up.

According to Clay Today, a news website for the community south of Jacksonville, the cops told Roundtree his food truck had to go. City manager’s orders. Roundtree didn’t have a permit to operate in Green Cove Springs, and not even the aftermath of a devastating hurricane was going to stop the city government from enforcing that law.

Brandi Acres, a spokeswoman for the Green Cove Springs Police Department, confirmed to Reason that a food truck was sent away on the day after Irma struck, but Acres said she could not provide any additional details on the incident or confirm the name of the food truck. An employee at Triple J’s BBQ confirmed the incident occured but declined to answer any questions or comment.

Green Cove Springs Mayor Mitch Timberlake this morning says he did not consider Roundtree’s gesture “a Good Samaritan situation.” Had the operators of the food truck come to city officials and asked for permission, Timberlake says, officials would have been happy to direct the food truck to where utility workers were in need of food.

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