South Padre Island, Texas– According to the attorney representing the city, food truck owners from out of town were denied permits because they didn’t meet the requirements to operate their business.
“They wanted to come to do business on the island and then, of course, they had to comply with the regulations that the city as they did not qualify under those regulations and so they did not get a permit. Their response to that was to fill a lawsuit.”Ricardo Navarro – Attorney for SPI
On Monday, city council members held a meeting to determine if the city would be amending the current food truck ordinance, which imposes some requirements on the conditions that it takes to obtain a permit.
“One criteria, is that they have to be tied to an existing brick and mortar establishment. Additionally, there are only so many permits allowed.”Ricardo Navarro – Attorney for SPI
The attorney tells us they are still waiting to decide on the ruling…
“Just some other issues that came up that cause me to make a recommendation to the council to not act on anything right now so we could look into the questions a little more.”Ricardo Navarro – Attorney for SPI
The institute for justice is representing the couple that filed a lawsuit against the city when they didn’t qualify for a permit.
“They challenge laws that they feel are not justified or unnecessary.”
We spoke to island residents who shared their thoughts regarding the food truck business.
“I don’t think it’s really fair to the restaurant owners that pay taxes.”SPI Resident
“People come, a lot of visitors, and I believe that it would be a good idea to have a lot of different kinds of food trucks”SPI Resident
“They are not paying any real estate taxes. They are not paying for any city services.”SPI Resident
The institute of justice believes Texans have a constitutional right to earn a living in any profession or business, free from unreasonable interference by the government, which they believe the island’s current ordinance violates.