I read “Town of Gibraltar Bans Food Trucks” and was disturbed by the actions and implications in the story.
Some of the best and reasonably priced food I have eaten has been from food trucks.
The purpose of government is not to discourage capitalism, restrict free trade or competition by excessive regulation.
This “banning” appears as such to me.
In fact it seems to be at least equal parts cronyism and protectionism of the existing restaurant business and owners who will benefit from the possibility of decreased competition. From the article it seems that several other Township persons should have also disqualified themselves due to conflict of interest. And then the one person who did recuse himself is quoted most extensively about the “dangers” of food trucks. Doesn’t make sense.
The irony is that in my opinion there is room for more food options in all of Door County and food trucks would seem to fill a niche that would be an attraction to further tourism. If they are not successful on their own merits they won’t flourish or continue to do business.
Further, if the issue is whether food trucks pay their fair share of taxes…go ahead and levy taxes/fees for food truck licenses. If there is great concern about a food truck on every block, create an ordinance that stipulates either zones or a maximum number not unlike liquor licenses.
It would seem to me that health and sanitation concerns are most appropriately addressed by existing Sanitation regulations and inspections. If the Town(s) wanted to crack down on food not prepared in restaurants (which in and of itself is no guarantee), they could start cracking down on all the food vendors at the various fairs and celebrations which are nearly a weekly occurrence during the high season. And to quote an incident from 1971 which is totally unrelated to food trucks seems tenuous (groundwater contamination – now there’s a real problem).
Further, seeking this injunction (ban) after other parties have in good faith been operating food truck operations seems patently unfair.
I’m not saying this action by the Town Supervisors will have me boycotting the Town’s existing restaurants, but it does give me pause.
Egg Harbor, Wis.