Akron City Council is looking at possibly changing legislation regarding the operation of food trucks in the city.
City Council President Garry Moneypenny says there's strong views from both sides on this ongoing issue.
"If you listen to the food truck industry people, they say this actually brings business to the area that they're set up in, and when you talk to the brick-and-mortar restaurants they say that takes away business from the area."
Current city law prevents any transient retailers from selling any item of value from a motor vehicle in Akron.
Lisa Abraham, food editor for the Akron Beacon Journal says those who operate the food trucks have been making headway by visiting Akron City Council to discuss the issue with the city's lawmakers.
"I think that for a long time, Akron was not even paying attention to the issue,"she says.
"There's certain people in the city administration who don't want to welcome them in, and now that they've made City Council aware of it, I feel it's a step in the right direction for them."
Abraham says that while the efforts made into revamping downtown should not be dismissed, the competition issue between the food trucks and the brick-and-mortar restaurants will only help, not hurt the Akron food industry.
"You can't underestimate the fact that these trucks for many chefs are a starter, they're a way of increasing revenue to a brick-and mortar business, or giving them the popularity they need to open up their own restaurant."
Moneypenny explains why the city and the Downtown Akron Partnership have been hesitant to allow food trucks downtown.
"In the past, I know there's been a lot of strong opposition to let them come in, because we've invested a lot of money downtown, as well as the business owners have made a strong investment in Downtown Akron, so there's been resistance to this."
He says several food truck operators spoke before Akron City Council two weeks ago asking them for a change in the current law as well as offering some proposed guidelines for food truck legislation.
"We just need to look at it with open minds, and we'll examine it to see what other communities are doing, and then we'll evaluate it," Moneypenny said.
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