Fate of food trucks to be determined by Horry County council members

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Horry County council members will determine the fate of food trucks after a committee approved the pilot program Monday.The first of three readings will be voted on by council on October 7. If council votes in favor of the program, the earliest we would see mobile food truck vendors could be November. Since 2010, a push to change the food vending ordinance was a focus for one supporter.

"I was the first person to come to the council to change the ordinance back in 2010," said Mike Mathis, owner of Buster Brown Hot Dogs.

Since then, the mobile food truck industry took off - and to keep up, the county has considered changing its current ordinance. For more than a year, the rules and regulations have been drafted and redone. With public input, the pilot program was presented to the committee Monday - increasing hours of operation and decreasing fees.

Other changes to the proposed ordinance, mostly based off of public input, include: decals to clearly show who is properly permitted within the county and determining zones where food trucks can operate. One concern for current food vendors is that if a brick and mortar restaurant opens up, the mobile vendor has to move.

"They don't put a lot of worth into mobile vending. They think people can move from here to there. You still put money into it. Whether it's a mobile business or a brick and mortar business, you're still building a business," Mathis expressed.If council votes to approve the pilot program, organizers suggest reevaluating it after one year to see what worked, and what didn't.

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