Council fails to reach decision on food trucks

Proposals aim to reduce restrictions n roadside sales

City council opened discussions on April 2 about cutting some of the red tape surrounding the rules for food trucks in Toronto.

A new proposal by city staff suggests the 77 food trucks licensed in Toronto should be allowed to park and serve customers for five hours. Currently, food trucks are allowed to park in a spot for only 10 minutes.

Mayoralty candidate Olivia Chow says she believes food trucks are good for small businesses and she wishes council would loosen restrictions.

“In Toronto, diversity is our strength,” she said. “[We need] a diverse kind of food, and a diverse kind of food delivery, whether its on a food truck or in a restraint…. Let’s cut the red tape”

However, some councillors argued that since the five-hour rule is hard to enforce, it shouldn’t be implemented at all.

“In effect, it doesn’t matter, because it can’t be enforced,” Counc. Gloria Lindsay Luby told council. “[It’s] going to cost us time and money. In my opinion, it’s impractical.”

Toronto’s parking enforcement would have to be trained how to deal with food trucks that have extended their stay. Luby said. She also questioned the practicality of how parking rules would be enforced, something city staff did not have an immediate answer to.

Council is expected to continue the debate April 4.