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« Don't worry, they fixed it last year | Main | IFYI »

Aug 17, 2012


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Peggy Hickle

All food vendors have the option to get a State permit from the State Health Department that allows them to vend in any county in NC. All the food trucks that we've worked with from other counties have that State permit as do many of the Guilford County food vendors. It's what makes it easier for organizers of events like the State Fair and Fun 4th to have food vendors. It's really hard to have a food vendor come to an event and then discover they don't pass inspection.

This is a paradigm that already exists, and that Guilford County Health department has seemed quite content with for all these years -- it certainly saves them a lot of people hours. I don't see how excluding food trucks from downtown Greensboro changes any of that anyway.

I also heard an interesting tidbit -- unverified, but interesting -- that the "downtown" lines for this purpose do not follow those of the BID, and that in fact the eastern boundary runs down the middle of Elm so that if you are on the west side, you are restricted, but the east side is free range. If this is true, Ed, we might see our dream of the taco truck right across the street. Tacos and pound cake!


"Unfair competition"? How would public health in the BID be any different than the rest of the County where they are allowed? Is there some public health threat in downtown we don't know about that will be exacerbated by mobile food trucks?

Either way, it sounds like fair notice for supporters to show up en masse to the hearing.

The State permit information is interesting, Peggy.


Why would the the County Board of Health rule on issues of competition?

If Justin Conrad had any character he'd recuse himself of this matter as he's already expressed a bias against it.

Eric Robert

Come on down and put all of the trucks down @ The Mill...no dgi, no bid, no board, no arbitrary /silly restrictions...and i will host them for free!
Live and let live...

Andrew Brod

Thanks for the update link, Ed. I must say, I didn't realize that this was about sales tax, because of course every business has to pay the sales tax for the county in which the sale is made. (I say "of course" even though I certainly knew nothing of such details before I was in a position to collect and pay sales tax myself.)

In addition, every business has to report the county of sale when it files its sales-tax return. The state then knows how to allocate tax revenues among the counties.

So if Justin's concern is about sales tax paid by food trucks, then it's a non-starter. It's a non-issue. Any food truck selling food here will generate sales-tax revenue for the county. For this reason, I assumed Justin was talking about other taxes. Did I assume wrong?


Peggy, you are right - the BID overlay is different than the food truck restriction. I posted it on our reference page. Hopefully today's response from the NC DOR is helpful. And, I totally agree that the health department is a separate conversation than the downtown one...


Ed, thank you for posting this link. I hope we have a good crowd on Monday night.

Earlier in the week, I had asked the staff of the Health Department to give us some information on these mobile units. How do they work in other communities, how are they inspected, and what would the impact of this initiative be to the Guilford County Department of Public Health? I asked our Environmental Health Director to give us a report at our next meeting, this coming Monday.

I wanted to make sure that all interested parties knew and had access to this information, so I posted about it not only on my personal Facebook page but also on the page of the supporters of this initiative. In addition, I called the city manager to let her know that this information would be presented so she could attend or send staff. I am not sure if the city and county had already started dialogue on this issue, but I felt it important that they had an opportunity. I also wanted to make sure the public knew that we would have an opportunity for questions as time allows.

On the second link you have, I had earlier clearly stated that I am neither advocating for nor against this initiative. I have some concerns about other issues as they do not relate to public health. I believe those issues can and will be addressed if this initiative plans to move forward.

Again, I appreciate you posting my link and I hope that we have an informative session this coming Monday. Hope to see many of you there.


"If Justin Conrad had any character
he'd recuse himself of this matter
as he's already expressed a bias against it."



Considering the level of inspection,
doesn't it seem counterintuative to emphasize health inspections,
while some others created the opportunity
for the University "dorm" situation to happen?

And who didn't bother to lift a finger?

More than a few.

Jim M

So on Justin Conrad's character...what happened to the 2 links to the posts on his Facebook page? I'm getting a "The page you requested was not found." when clicking on the links. So they were clearly removed. EPIC FAIL!

And Mr. Conrad ran for Senate District 27 and the first line on his website is, "I’m not a career politician or someone who’s spent my life learning how to play the game of politics". Yeah right!! I assume that will be deleted now...

IMO, he represents a conflict of interest in the matter and should not be involved. And the fact he made comments on Facebook and removed them indicates he has little integrity and can't handle the heat. He should be removed as the chair of the Guilford County Board of Health on Monday.

Ed Cone

Both links still work fine for me, and the posts are still up on his Facebook page.

The meeting, which Conrad chose to publicize and to which he invited all interested parties, is is an opportunity for public discussion of some of the issues to be resolved.

sal leone

I think Conrad can be fair, lets give him a chance to see how he handles the issue, besides its just talk for now, its a start.

Jim M

Ed, the links only work if you're a friend of Mr. Conrad's. Since I'm not on his friends lists, the links do not work. If you go to the posts on his page and "mouse over" the little globe, it will probably not say "public", but "friends" or "custom" or similar.

So I still find it shady that he's "publicly posting" a meeting on Facebook, yet only his friends can see it and not the public at large? Clearly his intention was to only have his friends in attendance...


Jim M - To be fair, I saw his posting on the Downtown Food Trucks GSO facebook page, after I ran in to the same issues you did. So he did post it on the proponents site.

Jim M

Agreed, Brian, but was it an afterthought? I don't know what day/time it was posted on his page. So was it only posted on the Downtown Food Trucks GSO after being called out on it?

269 "fans", buried in the "recent posts by others" section) vs 1,704 "friends", prominently displayed in the main feed...

Ed Cone

He also emailed me the info. So,no.

Ginia Zenke

When did we (the press, society in general) substitute "impact" for "affect"? When it was too much trouble to remember the differences of the definition between affect and effect?
Impact I associate with car crashes and colons. Well, it might prove appropriate here, but let's hope not.

Joe Killian

Affect and effect aren't that difficult to remember. But some editors prefer "impact" -- they think it's more active.

You get a lot of these language tweaks as a writer.

Ed Cone

I'm generally accepting, sometimes grudgingly, of verbing and other linguistic transitions, but I have resisted this use of "impact" and, worse, a favorite of my old boss, "impactful." But it is a fight we have lost.

Peggy Hickle

My pet peeve is "proactive."


Mine is "grow" as in "grow our business"


I'll "notate" that.


Also reign and rein

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