Change in food truck regs rejected

by Madison White Franks

KILMARNOCK—The town’s mobile vendor policy will likely remain the same after a discussion held at the Kilmarnock planning commission meeting Monday night.

At a recent town council committee meeting, Kilmarnock Brewhaus owner Don Lee expressed his concern regarding existing food truck policies, specifically parking and vending on town streets.

Council requested the commission discuss the issue after Lee requested food trucks be allowed to park on West Church Street in front of his establishment, said planning and zoning director Marshal Sebra.

“This request is related to the sentence in the ordinance which states: ‘Mobile truck and pushcart vendors are prohibited from setting up within any public right-of-way, with the exception of a public parking lot or park owned by the Town of Kilmarnock,’” said Sebra. “This policy and regulations are town-wide, so council wanted the commission to think about this and maybe come up with a recommendation on how to proceed, or not, as far as changing our regulations.”

He also said he has been trying to get an answer from the Virginia Department of Transportation on whether or not they require any type of approval for mobile food vending in the public rights-of-way.

“My understanding is VDOT absolutely prohibits any food vendors on public rights-of-way. However, the caveat is the local municipalities may modify this on an individual basis,” said commission member Spike Nunn.

“I’ve already contacted VDOT and they do not have a problem with it as long as the vendor is not in the street,” said Lee. “What I am requesting is a conditional use permit for after 5 o’clock on Thursdays and Fridays on a one-way street that is one block long and on Saturdays and Sundays. I don’t think anyone wants to see someone in a brewery drinking beer after beer without something to eat…