Tweaked rules could bring more food trucks to town

Six months after passage, regulations on food trucks in Oberlin are already being revised.

City council voted in April after more than a year of discussions to allow food trucks in Oberlin but only for special events and private parties.

After getting feedback from vendors this summer, council opted Monday to make changes to the legislation. The main tweak will allow vendors to purchase a seasonal permit for $125, which would allow them to attend multiple events during the summer.

City manager Eric Norenberg said vendors did not like having to pay a fee every time they rolled into town.

Truck operators also told Norenberg that Oberlin is one of the few cities that requires a safety inspection before they can open shop.

A permit is not required for a food truck owned and operated by a restaurant in town when the vehicle is on the business’ property.

This would mean Lorenzo’s Pizzeria, for instance, could use its wood burning fire pit truck to make pizzas as long as the vehicle is on the restaurant’s property.

Councilman Bryan Burgess said he wants an exemption for local businesses even if the food vehicle is not directly on their property.

The revised regulations will be discussed further at council’s next meeting at 7 p.m. Oct. 19.

Valerie Urbanik can be reached at 440-775-1611 or on Twitter @ValUrbanik.