New Food Truck Compromise Will Face Council Scrutiny

WASHINGTON -- What will the future of food trucks look like in the nation's capital? On Wednesday, Nicholas Majett, the director of the D.C. Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs, explained the changing dynamics and newly released regulations on WAMU-FM's "Kojo Nnamdi Show."

The recent swell in popularity of non-traditional food trucks has brick-and-mortar restaurants voicing concern about what this means for their businesses. Now, D.C. regulators are proposing new rules that they hope will satisfy all parties.

The rules, Majett said, have been outdated:

They're over 30 years old. And when they were written, they didn't contemplate mobile vending. A lot of things have happened over the course of 30 years, including social media, which kind of feeds the mobile vending industry. Thirty years ago, when the regulations were written, they were primarily designed for ice cream trucks, which is primary what mobile vending was. And it required trucks to only stop when there were customers. And once they served the customers, they had to leave that particular site.

New rules would treat savory trucks with grills differently from cold-preparation trucks, like those that serve ice cream. They also may limit the number of trucks allowed at a certain gathering place, like Farragut Square.

Washington City Paper breaks down who wins and who loses under the new rules, which could change when the D.C. Council votes on them.

"They could add. They could take away," Majett said on the show.

Listen to the full interview here to find out what else is in store for the food truck community and their patrons.