There’s a food truck movement rolling across the country, the Conway City Council was told Tuesday night, and the city’s ordinances relating to mobile vendors are bringing up the rear.
Planning Director Bryan Patrick presented an ordinance that would include all the information a vendor needs to know in order to operate up to the city’s standards.
Vendors that operate for fewer than 14 days a year will not be affected by the ordinance.
Other exemptions would be newspaper couriers, lemonade stands, on-site agricultural sales, food deliveries, ice cream trucks, catering trucks and farmers markets.
Alderman Mark Vaught asked if the ordinance would be necessary if the city had business licenses.
Patrick replied: "I have a list of about 50 reasons why business licenses would be a good idea for the City of Conway."
The Council also:
• Approved an ordinance establishing fees to be assessed for the rental of the Conway Expo Center that includes charges for tables, chairs, bleachers, cages, pens, stalls and coops, RV sites, security and cleaning deposits.
Steve Ibbotson, parks director, said the Expo Center is "booked solid" from January through March.
• Approved an ordinance authorizing a change in staffing levels for the Parks & Recreation Department, reducing the staff from 32 to 28 authorized positions and reducing the cost of salary and benefits by about $170,697.
"This will reduce the number of employees and reclassify some positions. Some people will get a slight increase in salaries because of the change in their positions and responsibilities," Ibbotson said.
"Those who are being paid more are increasing their work load and responsibilities," Mayor Tab Townsell said.
Reviewing staffing levels was a suggestion from the Citizen Task Force, and members of that committee in the audience applauded when Ibbotson made his presentation.
Alderman Mary Smith said: "Maybe this will be a challenge for all our department heads to come up with similar plans."
• Approved the third year of an agreement with the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service to provide educational programs for urban horticulture, community leadership and 4-H youth development. The City will provide $25,000 for its part of the programming that includes Arbor Day, the tree board, farmers market and as a resource for the Planning Department.
• Approved an ordinance establishing the division of the four-tenths (.4) mil, voluntary assessment for three cemeteries in the city: Oak Grove, 60 percent; St. Joseph, 19 percent; and Robinson, 21 percent.
In addition, Finance Director Tyler Winningham said sales tax income for September, to be received in November, was 6.3 percent over last year at the same time and the city collections are 1.3 percent above last year to date. Whatever is collected in October will be counted as 2012 receipts.
(Staff writer Becky Harris can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org <mailto:email@example.com> and 505-1234.)