SAVANNAH, GA – Savannah’s city council says it’s ready for food trucks, but before they can roll into town, the council needs to come up with an ordinance to regulate them.
Currently, the Chatham County Health Department has permitted 23 food trucks, nine of those are active. Savannah Citizen’s Office Director Susan Broker presented the first draft of the proposal Thursday.
During the council work session she said while this was the first draft, almost a year of work had gone into the proposal.
Her team looked at food truck ordinances in other cities to form the ordinance for Savannah.
And when it came to where the food trucks would be, and how much the food truck owners wold pay in fees, the council had questions.
Broker says the annual permit fee for food trucks would be $150. Alderman Tom Bordeaux noted that seemed very low compared to the costs that permanent restaurants incur.
“I don’t think we should give food trucks an unfair advantage,” said Bordeaux.
Alderman Carolyn Bell said the council could come up with a fee they deemed fair. Broker said that food trucks wouldn’t be able to pull up to a curb and operate with no costs from the city and state.
“They would still have to get a business certificate they would have to go through Chatham County Health department they would still pay sales tax,” said Broker.
The proposed ordinance outlined zones that would allow food trucks. It would allow food trucks in any area already zoned for a restaurant, but Broker said there would be set distances between food trucks and established restaurants.