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The Skinny On Food Trucks In the City

By Adam Popescu, Beverly Hills Courier

Right now, the City of Los Angeles sits in limbo, waiting for their city council to decide how to regulate an estimated 4,000 trucks operating in the greater L.A. area.

Beverly Hills, however, remains a food truck desert.

Some vendors, like Krazy BBQ co-owner Sam Kim, are under the impression that the City doesn’t allow their trucks, when in fact Beverly Hills municipal code does not ban food trucks.

The cities of Beverly Hills and West Hollywood are two of the only cities within greater L.A. that require their own business permit for operation.

In order to operate in the City, code restricts parking to 30 minutes at any location. Trucks cannot return to within 500 feet of the same location within a four hour period. In addition, residential parking is prohibited from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m, with a minimum distance of at least 200 feet from any school. Trucks are forbidden from using horns or musical devices between 8 p.m. and 9 a.m. Food truck operators (drivers, cooks) are required to have a peddler’s permit, issued through the City’s Finance Department.

The City also enforces business tax registration and checks for current health certification, issued through L.A. County Health Department. Most issues with the food trucks center around extended parking, illegal parking, or leaving trash behind.

“We’re actively enforcing municipal code violations, either parking too long in designated areas, either red zones or weight violations,” Beverly Hills Police Lt. and Traffic Bureau Commander Mark Rosen said.

Parts of the code, like an annual $217.30 fee for trucks operators, and a $89.80 fee for truck employees are a deterrent for vendors like Krazy BBQ’s Kim. Time restrictions also loom large.

“Thirty minutes in a location really doesn’t make sense, because by the time we set up, prep, station—by the time customers come to form a line it doesn’t make sense for us. In a private lot, yes,” Kim said.

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