CASPER, Wyo. — Those seeking mobile vendor parking permits in downtown Casper now have the ability to formally request exceptions be made to the rules.
A vendor could only except exceptions twice per calendar year.
The Casper City Council passed an amendment to the mobile vendor parking permit ordinance on third reading during their Tuesday, Aug. 6 meeting.
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Councilman Ken Bates offered an amendment to the changes to allow vendors to request six exceptions per calendar year. The initial changes only allowed two exception requests per year.
Bates’ amendment passed.
Councilwoman Khrystyn Lutz proposed an amendment to relax the time limits to allow vendors obtaining permits to park for 24 hours under a given permit.
Lutz’s amendment passed. It applies to all mobile vendor permits without having to request an exception to the rules.
Lutz pointed out that since the fee is $25 per space, most food vendor trailers have to pay a $75 fee for parking permits. She said that the time restrictions don’t make sense given that cost.
The changes have taken some time to put in place. They originally grew out of concern that there was not a formal process for people to request exceptions.
The council granted a one time exception to a mobile vendor to park longer than the rules allow, a decision some council members thought would be perceived as favoritism.
The downtown and OYD mobile vendor parking permits only allow people to operate from 3 pm to 3 am Monday-Friday and from 1 pm to 3 am on weekends.
Some food truck owners have said they think the city should do away with the hourly restrictions entirely.
Wyo Philly Wagon owner Rob Caputa said the Council should relax the time restrictions. He said that the flexibility to request exceptions would nevertheless be beneficial.
Dave Hinton, owner of Lefty’s BBQ and Catering, had also requested an exception to the hourly restrictions in order to prepare his BBQ food in time for a charity event.
Instead of granting an exception, the council encouraged him to speak with the Casper-Natrona County Health Department to ask that they allow him to prepare his food off-site.
The health department allowed Hinton to do so and said they would work with people like him on a case-by-case basis.
The second reading of the amendment was tabled after Councilwoman Khrystyn Lutz asked that more work session time be devoted to looking at food truck issues.
The previous version of the ordinance did not include language that let applicants know that they can request exceptions to the rules.
The amendment adds language to allow applicants to request that permits be valid for up to five consecutive days “for special events or extenuating circumstances.”
It likewise would allow requests for exceptions to the hourly restrictions.