SACRAMENTO, CA – After nearly four years of discussion and debate, the Sacramento City Council voted Tuesday night to lift restrictions on food trucks in an attempt to encourage more mobile meal vendors to operate within city limits.

The city’s Law and Legislation Committee asked the council to allow food trucks to park on city streets for as long as parking regulations allow – well beyond the current limit of 30 minutes – and simplify a permit process that enables trucks to sell food on private property.

Changing the way food trucks work

In a unanimous vote, city council members approved new regulations, which have been in the works since January 2012. The new rules, which will go into effect by the end of June, allow trucks to stay curbside for as long as parking limits allow.

“With the adoption of the proposed code, food vending vehicles could basically operate on the public right-of-way as long as it is legal to park or vend on private property with the issuance of a Private Property Permit,” according to a report compiled by city staff. “These changes should enhance the City’s opportunities for outdoor vending while still protecting the public safety.”

The ordinance, which Law and Legislation Committee members unanimously passed in March, was developed with an eye toward mitigating tension between brick-and-mortar businesses and the food trucks that park at a curb nearby.

Although the food trucks could park on city streets for the posted time limit, trucks would have to stay 50 feet away from intersections and 100 feet from outdoor seating areas at restaurants. In the early morning hours of 1 to 3 a.m., the trucks would be required to stay at least 1,000 feet away from business with entertainment permits.

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