Food truck frustrations in Kamloops

By Jill Sperling
May 4, 2016 - 4:31pm Updated: May 4, 2016 - 5:48pm

KAMLOOPS — The city's Food Truck and Trailer program returns this month, but with several strict regulations on how and when they can operate some vendors are unable to participate. 

WATCH: Full report by Jill Sperling

"We respect Kamloops bylaws," said Deanna Bell, owner of Cookshack Cravings. "We are going to keep the area clean, we are going to have our garbage, we're going to leave at the time they want but I would like to stay later. I would like to go downtown from 5 p.m. to midnight. This is not possible in Kamloops." 

Food trucks can only operate between the hours of 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays and from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends. 

Already a tight space, the Cookshack Cravings trailer is too long to be parked at Gaglardi Square Park. 

The total vehicle length can be no longer than 12.2 m., and trailers cannot be disconnected from the trucks that haul them. 

Jeff Gilroy runs Cheffrey 911. His unit is three ft. too long.

"It was part of my business plan to operate downtown," Gilroy said. "So that's not cool. But this is designed to do multiple things, and it's on wheel for a reason so you work around the rules or you find other ways to do things. It's just unfortunate that I can't really bring it to downtown Kamloops." 

Gilroy moved to Kamloops from Winnipeg, investing approximately $50,000 into his business.

"We were in touch with Community Futures and they were very excited about this whole thing," he said. "You know, we were moving down here, I was building a company, and it was like, 'come on in.'"

But the rules don't appear to echo that sentiment, and many vendors have given up on the idea of operating downtown.

Eats Amore was the only food truck that applied to operate at Gaglardi Square Park. 

Owner, Mikey Wheeler-Johnson said he was concerned the program could be pulled completely. 

"That's kind of a hold-back for us," Wheeler-Johnson said. "They have this clause in the program that at any time if they don't like the way things are going they can pull the plug but we have to be paid up in full to participate."

With restrictions so tight, many vendors are travelling out of town for business. 

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