Monthly Archives: April 2014

Rollin’ along

This weekend marks the last one before the great “food truck debate” comes to a head at the Public Participation Meeting scheduled for Monday, April 28, 2014, at 7:15 p.m., City Hall (2nd Floor), 300 Dufferin Avenue

Personally, I’m looking forward to this meeting, and I hope everyone will get a chance to express their support or lack of support for food trucks in the city.

I’m glad that the amendment to bylaw L6 includes allowing food trucks to operate between 7 a.m. and 3 a.m. and that the other rules are not overly demanding.

As I mentioned in my previous post, overall startup fees for food trucks are manageable, and the proposed $1,225 for category 7 vehicles is reasonable. 

I think there’s going to be a good show of support on Monday and I look forward to meeting you all there.

Before I sign off, I just wanted to quote from the recommendation because I think the message regarding food trucks has really begun to resonate with council members and city staff:

“The rationale of the recommended amendment…is to enhance the economic vitality and vibrant street life in London while ensuring compliance with regulations regarding food health and safety. The municipal purpose of the bylaw aligns with two of councils strategic priorities: “A strong economy that encourages jobs, talent, ideas and innovation” and “a vibrant and diverse community that is liveable, exciting, cultural and friendly.”

Many municipalities which have embraced the food truck phenomenon have implemented regulations which encourage the introduction of refreshment vehicles on city property in an effort to recognize the entrepreneurial spirit and innovation associated with this format of delivering food services to customers. Furthermore, a vibrant food truck “scene” in other cities has provided an increase in culinary tourism and the diversity of food options throughout the city. These economic and cultural priorities are coupled with the goals of food health and safety which are standard with any format of food service delivery.”

Looking forward to Monday’s meeting! 

Have a great weekend,

Paul

Keep on truckin’

From Halifax to the food truck mecca of Portland, mobile eateries are sweeping the continent with a panoply of unique victuals fit for urbanites from every socio-economic tier of society. 

But here in London, the question remains: Will city council finally listen to the deafening chorus of voices asking naysayers to “keep calm and foodtruck on”?

The answer to this question should arrive this week, once city council reviews a new report on food trucks put together by city staff.

Whatever the outcome, I encourage everyone who’s in favour of the food truck phenomenon to attend the public participation meeting to be held at City Hall on April 28, 2014.

The food truck issue – which never had to become an issue in the first place – is a good example of why I decided to run for city council: I’m tired of watching a majority of politicians maintain our status quo while interesting and feasible options for renewal get stuck in the proverbial traffic of city council “motions”, bylaws and irrational fears.

Some of our politicians, however, do support food trucks. Even Mayor Fontana has pointed out how people make their living from mobile food sales and that proposed rules regarding vending times and locations are too restrictive and counterproductive.

Compared to a traditional restaurant, food trucks have much lower overhead costs and represent a viable option for entrepreneurs and cooking school grads looking to peddle their wares – and favourite fares – on the open market-road. Food trucks promote creativity, ingenuity and add to the urban flavour of London’s landscape both in form and content (by content, I’m referring to the food itself, of course : )

I really hope council seizes the opportunity to get the trucks rolling as summer closes in on the Forest City.

Let’s see what happens…Image

 

 

 

 

 

Passover and the shooting in Kansas

I’m about to begin celebrating the 8-day festival of Passover (which is my middle name, Pesach) and felt like sharing something about yesterday’s horrific shooting in Kansas which targeted members of the local Jewish community.

I actually know someone who was a member of that community, but decided to move away. Thankfully, she does not know any of the victims, although that doesn’t change the fact that she is shocked and deeply saddened by the incident, as am I.

Some people may think it ironic (for lack of a better word) that none of the victims were, in fact, Jewish.
I can’t say that I’m surprised. When ethnic/religious/political hatred lets loose, it’s anyone’s guess who will fall prey, regardless of the killer’s intention. History teaches that racism and other forms of mass animosity, inevitably lead to suffering for everyone.

I wish all those affected by this tragedy comfort and consolation in this most difficult time.

I’ll be celebrating with family and friends for the next couple of days and look forward to re-joining the conversation about Ward 4’s future then.

All the best to everyone,
Paul