Running Out of Time

Yesterday, the SoCalMFVA went to court to defend a member in a traffic court hearing.  The member had received a ticket for violating the 30 minute time limit condition of his Santa Monica permit.  We prepared for the trial with a well written brief explaining why time limits were unenforceable.  The City of Santa Monica chose to dismiss the case instead of going to trial

Most municipalities have a time limit restriction for food trucks.  Culver City, Manhattan Beach, Hermosa, Beverly Hills etc. all have time limits of 10 – 30 minutes.  This doesn’t allow the trucks to do much business.  Los Angeles doesn’t have a time limit rule because it was overturned last year in court challenge (used to be 30 minutes for residential, 60 minutes for commercial).  The court’s reasoning for not enforcing the LA ordiance (80.73 (b)2(B) was that it had no rational relationship to public safety.

California Vehicle Code section 22455 (b) says that municipalities may not prohibit trucks, they may regulate them, but only in the interest of public safety.  And since no municipality has come up with a sufficient defense for why time limits enhance public safety, all of the recent cases on the matter have sided with the trucks (there have been four time limit cases).  So now it’s our job to enform ALL of the City Attorney’s out there that time limits have no place in a City’s municipal code.  Time limit ordinances, your days are numbered.


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