San Bernadino: County to Look at Food Truck Ban

by Neil Nisperos |

San Bernardino County residents may soon be able to enjoy grub from food trucks on local streets.

Supervisor Janice Rutherford said she is working on an ordinance to reverse a ban on food trucks operating in the county and hopes to discuss it with her fellow supervisors in the next few months.

“I think this is a great opportunity for a new type of small business and for jobs,” Rutherford said. “I also think there’s a great demand for it.”

Matt Geller, the president of the Southern California Mobile Food Vendors Association, said overturning the ban would stimulate the local economy.

“I think its a great business model,” Geller said. “If someone wants to start a brick- and-mortar restaurant, it might cost them a million and a half dollars, but if you want to go into it with these food trucks, you don’t need to be a wealthy person.”

Food trucks are only able to operate at permitted events in the county, such as the Chino Valley Foodie Festival earlier this month at Don Lugo High School in Chino.

Rutherford’s spokesman Scott Vanhorne said the ban has probably been in place for decades because of the perception that mobile food vendors could spread foodborne illnesses.

But the county’s interest in food trucks seems to be clear.

Hundreds of enthusiasts attended the Don Lugo High gathering as well as similar events hosted by My Delight Cupcakery at The Gateway at Mountain Village shopping center in Ontario.

“I would like to see the trucks allowed on a regular basis with all the health inspections and permits, so people can have confidence and safety,” Rutherford said.

Melinda Moreno, an owner of My Delight Cupcakery, said the owners plan to open their own food truck in a couple of months and are hopeful that the supervisors will approve Rutherford’s proposal.

“It’s something we’re excited about,” Moreno said. “This community is ready for it. They’re tired of traveling to Orange County and Los Angeles County for the trucks.”