It’s no secret that we've been opposed to specific, unfair & unconstitutional regulations in the new Chicago food truck ordinance. We believe that food trucks should be able to vend wherever you, the consumer, want us to; not have the government tell us where we can and can’t conduct our business based on some arbitrary reason. As many of you are aware, food trucks are currently banned to park within 200 feet of a “brick and mortar establishment”, making it almost impossible to legally park in the downtown loop. Additionally, the mandatory GPS unit that the city says we have to install at our own cost makes us feel like criminals wearing an ankle bracelet. And when the city officials who monitor the GPS see a food truck parked within 200 feet of a restaurant (regardless of whether or not the GPS unit is “accurate”) the tickets now faced are between $1,000-$2,000. Interestingly, the parking violation for parking in front of a fire hydrant is only $100, whereas when a food truck parks in front of a restaurant the fine is $2,000…. making us wonder: Is public health and safety truly the reason behind these unfair regulations? We think not.
Today, The Chicago Schnitzel King joined forces with our fellow food truckers Cupcakes for Courage and the Institute for Justice and filed a lawsuit against the City of Chicago. We are hopeful that the city will recognize the need to stop playing favorites and let the best food and/or business model win, especially since other national cities such as Los Angeles haven’t had a proximity restriction since the 1980s. Since food trucks are a vibrant symbol of the American dream, we are also hopeful that the city will realize that paving the way for big business to win only jeopardizes this American Dream.
“Schnitzel King, what will you do if you lose?” asked a reporter today. Mayo Clinic trip, perhaps? In all seriousness, we plan to keep on fighting for our right to schnitzel in the loop, and get this ordinance changed. Chicago is our home, and we want to be able to successfully operate our small business in our hometown, while helping to foster an innovative food truck community Chicago. What would you do?
Greg & Kristin