CHICAGO, IL – The fight for freer food trucks lives on after the Cook County Circuit Court shot down the city’s motion to dismiss a complaint against anti-competitive restrictions.
The hearing, held at the Daley Center this morning, is the latest development in an ongoing food truck movement in Chicago. The city had filed a motion to dismiss a complaint that a July 2012 ordinance restricting where food trucks can operate (namely, away from restaurants) and requiring a GPS tracking device for every food truck violates the state constitution. The motion to dismiss the complaint was rejected, and the city has been ordered to answer the complaint.
“They held up the core of the case,” said Robert Frommer, an attorney for the Institute for Justice, an Arlington, Va.-based public-interest law firm that represented the owners of food trucks Schnitzel King and Cupcakes for Courage in court today. “Chicago has over 1,000 restaurants, and the cumulative effect is to make it virtually impossible for mobile vendors to vend where their customers are.”
The city did not respond to our requests for comment. Mr. Frommer expects the city to file the answer in roughly a month.
The two food-truck operators filed a lawsuit against the ordinance in November, claiming that the 200-foot rule is “protectionist” and discriminates against mobile food operators.
The much-protested July 2012 ordinance made it illegal to operate food trucks within 200 feet of brick-and-mortar establishments unless it was within one of the 21 city-designated food-truck zones.
The Institute for Justice has filed similar lawsuits on behalf of food-truck operators in El Paso, Texas, Washington and Atlanta in the past two years.
Find the entire article by Ashley Boncimino at Chicago Crain’s Business <here>