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Lawmakers today passed and sent to the governor legislation to lighten the regulatory burden on operators of food trucks
The State Mobile Food Establishment Registration Act (2018-S 2502B, 2018-H 7790A) introduced by Sen. Dawn Euer and House Speaker Pro Tempore Brian Patrick Kennedy on behalf of the Department of Administration, would standardize the business registration process for trucks or carts that sell food, ice cream or lemonade by creating a state mobile food establishment registration, and would explicitly exempt such establishments from laws regulating hawkers and peddlers. Currently, food truck and cart operators must navigate different regulatory structures in each municipality in which they operate. The bill would maintain the ability of municipalities to regulate location and hours of operation.
“As popular as food trucks are, Rhode Island’s complicated regulatory hurdles for them can hinder their development. Streamlining those regulations will encourage more people to launch new and exciting businesses that support families, provide jobs and strengthen Rhode Island’s rich culinary atmosphere,” said Senator Euer (D-Dist. 13, Newport, Jamestown) in a press release issued on Saturday. “All of our communities are enriched when mom-and-pop businesses are able to flourish. Eliminating overregulation is a way we can support these small businesses, enhancing the character of our communities while allowing hardworking entrepreneurs to succeed.”
Said Representative Kennedy (D-Dist. 38, Hopkinton, Westerly), “Food truck owners go into business because they have a dream of making food people enjoy, not because they are really good at navigating complicated, confusing regulations. Everyone wins when we eliminate the red tape and help small business owners get closer to making their dreams come true.”