Washington, DC: DC Council Passes Revised Food Truck Regulations

By Che Ruddell-Tabisola  |  Food Truck Association

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today the D.C. City Council unanimously passed revised food truck regulations that allow food trucks to continue to operate and to serve District residents and workers.

“D.C.  City Council today moved a step closer to bringing to a close a process that has gone on for years and to update regulations that are nearly 40 years old,” said Doug Povich, Chairman of the Food Truck Association of Metropolitan Washington and co-owner of Red Hook Lobster Pound-DC.

The revised rules reduce the amount of unobstructed sidewalk required in order to vend to six feet and reduce the restriction on food trucks near lottery-assigned locations to 200 feet. The rules now move to Mayor Vincent Gray for his signature.

In addition to passing the revised regulations, D.C. Council passed two amendments introduced by Councilman Tommy Wells. Councilman Wells’ first amendment reduced a proposed $2,000 fine for parking at an expired meter to $50 – the same as what other vendors pay. Wells also introduced an amendment to specify that parking meters are not sidewalk obstructions.

“We are extremely grateful to Councilmember Wells for undertaking the hard work that the D.C. Council has undertaken to finally create vending rules that work for food trucks, small businesses and the District itself and that allow residents and consumers in the City to continue to have choices for where to spend their dining dollars,” Povich said.

“We’re glad that the D.C. City Council rejected the Mayor’s proposed regulations and succeeded in passing something better,” said Bert Gall, director of the Institute for Justice’s National Street Vending Initiative. “Today is a win for food-truck entrepreneurs, their employees, and everyone who works and lives in the District.

“We will now closely monitor the implementation of the regulations in order to remind city officials that their proper role is to protect health and safety, not stifle competition,” Gall added.

About the Food Truck Association 

The Food Truck Association of Metropolitan Washington is a group of more than 60 local food truck owner-operators. We seek to sustain the wellbeing of our industry, foster a sense of community and work in partnership to improve food truck regulations. We are engaged community members who deeply care about our city and believe in working together to make a positive impact. The Food Truck Association’s signature event is the Curbside Cookoff food truck festival series.