Legislation needed to streamline rules for food-truck owners

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Because of the skyrocketing popularity of food trucks, those who own and operate them need a set of standard operating rules.

That’s the gist of some laws coming soon in Nebraska. The Center for Rural Affairs has found a “hodgepodge” of food truck regulations in Nebraska city, county, and USDA inspection areas.

Jonathan Hladik, policy director at the Center for Rural Affairs, said this could make it harder for food truck owners to grow their businesses. Across the country, he said, food trucks will employ more than 38,000 of his people and generate $2.7 billion in revenue by 2021, and Nebraska has updated legislation to accommodate this growing industry. Said we need to join other states.

“Mainly, they all eliminated redundancies and simplified regulations, and now is the time to decide what modernization should look like in Nebraska,” Hladik said. increase.

He said the Center worked with Grand Island State Senator Ray Aguilar to draft a bill that would allow Douglas, Hall, and Lancaster counties to abide by a “reciprocity agreement,” so each county would have to pay the other two. He said he would come to recognize the license from the county. Hladik said this is the first step to encourage a set of higher standards for food in his trucks statewide.

Hladik said owners who want to work at events such as the College World Series, Nebraska football games, and state fairs, for example, know they need to meet Douglas, Lancaster, or Hall county licensing standards. I guess.

“If everyone knew what the criteria were, there would be no uncertainty. You wouldn’t have to pay an extra permit every time you wanted to go to another county. If you want to go to , you have to meet a higher standard, and I think that’s in the interest of everyone involved,” he said.

He said more than 500 towns, 93 counties and state agricultural departments all have varying capacities to establish food truck regulations.

Nick Maestas, owner of Muchachos Food Truck and Restaurant, said each location seems to have different rules and permit requirements.

“It’s kind of a logistical nightmare figuring out what you need, who you need to pay, and how long in advance you have to do this. And hoodies like me It can be discouraging for truck vendors. We just want to go and serve our community, pay taxes in that community, and grow our brand at the same time.”

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