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Plan would allow 3-hour limits for food trucks
food trucks
Food trucks at Woodward park during the City of Manteca sponsored “Food Truck Mania” in 2016.

The latest proposal to change Manteca’s food truck ordinance would limit them from being on any one parcel in the city for more than three hours.

That is a lot more restrictive than what was suggested by staff in February when it was proposed food trucks could operate from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. unless otherwise restricted by the city. The three hour proposal, however, is significantly more liberal than current city rules that restrict food trucks from being in one place for more than 10 minutes. Food trucks will be allowed to operate from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. within Manteca under suggested ordinance changes as long as they move to a new location after three hours.

The proposed rule changes for food trucks will be back before the Manteca Planning Commission when they meet Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Civic Center, 1001 W. Center St.

Enforcement of the 10-minute rule put in place 17 years ago t is extremely spotty. On Thursday, as an example, there were two food trucks on the southwest corner of Louise Avenue and Airport Way for at least 90 minutes.

The 10-minute rule went into effect in 2002 when several food trucks were parking on property adjacent to restaurants along Yosemite Avenue west of Highway 99 often for more than 10 hours at a time.

The new rules being considered exclude sidewalk vendors such as a pushcart such as a hot dog vendor or a pedal-rive cart such as those that appear in neighborhoods selling frozen treats.

The food truck ordinance as originally proposed failed to garner any motion from commission members in February. Instead the staff reworked it after concerns were expressed about food trucks being able to stay put in one place for 14 hours a day and the fact non-motorized vendors faced the same rules as food trucks.

Other proposed rules for food trucks include:

barring food trucks from parcels within 150 feet of a parcel with a legally established restaurant. 

prohibiting food trucks from unimproved properties. A parcel is considered improved under the ordinance if it contains a building that can legally be occupied. 

prohibiting mobile food vendor vehicles (food trucks, ice cream trucks, and canteen trucks) from operating “within the public right-of-way or on any city property except in the event of a street closure for a special event allowed by the city”.

The Parks & Recreation Department has the authority to establish rules and regulations for mobile food vendors wishing to operate within city parks.

No more than two mobile food vendor vehicles may operate at any one location unless a temporary use permit has been issued.  

Mobile food vendor vehicles shall be clean and in good repair and not have any peeling, dents, rust, scratches or missing components that are discernible at a distance of 5 feet or more.

They cannot block a lawfully placed signage of another business, impede ingress or egress from another business, or be located with any clear visibility triangle.

Signs shall be limited to those attached to the exterior or interior of a mobile food vendor vehicle plus one temporary free-standing sign. That free-standing sign may not be placed more than 2 feet beyond the food vendor and have two faces with the sign being no taller than four feet wide than three feet and require a city-issued portable sign permit. The name of the business, the commissary (where the vehicle is housed) address, and phone number must be displayed on the passenger side of the vehicle and clearly visible at a distance of 10 feet.

Areas around the food vehicle must be kept neat and orderly at all times. Once a vehicle is parked and in operation it is the vendors’ responsibility for cleanliness of the area — not less than 50 feet from all parts of the vehicle — regardless of the occurrence or source of waste in the area.

They must provide a trash receptacle for public use that is sufficient and suitable to contain all the trash the operation generates. All waste must be removed before a mobile food vendor vehicle departs from a location.

Mobile food vendors will basically be limited to all commercial and industrial zones and must obtain the proper city permits.

To contact Dennis Wyatt, email