Encourage Farmville commissioners to reconsider food truck fee

The Standard April 15, 2021 Letter to the Editor (NOT a faith column)

At the April Town of Farmville Board meeting, Commissioners Brenda Elks and Alma Hobbs said they each had a maximum and minimum daily fee they would consider for food trucks. Both shared a $75 per day maximum and Mayor John Moore proceeded to lead the discussion in that direction. From that point on, no elected official spoke of any daily charge except $75. The minimum figure never was discussed, nor was any possible annual fee. The commissioners voted to change from a $100 per year fee to a $75 per day fee. No indication was given as to how $75 was determined or the reason for such an exorbitant increase.

The Town of Tarboro charges a $25 per year fee for property registration for places like the Tarboro Brewing Company in their Central Business District on Main Street, which regularly has food trucks come. They charge no fee for the trucks themselves. The Town of Snow Hill has a $125 per year peddler’s fee, which covers food trucks. Winterville has no permit or fee for food trucks on private property. They have a peddler’s permit which covers food trucks in public places and costs $25 every three months.

Farmville’s $100 per year fee was in keeping with nearby municipalities. The new, random $75 a day fee will, in essence, send food trucks across our town lines. Gorham’s Café, an extremely popular brick and mortar restaurant in Farmville, started as a food truck. Mobile food units not only offer interesting options for local residents, but also give business owners the chance to discover if they might like to put down more permanent roots. Please join me in encouraging Farmville’s commissioners to reconsider their vote. A reasonable increase could have been understood, but their huge hike has prompted serious talk of a lawsuit against our town.

Celia Stone

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