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Local Government Mobile Food Vendors Act & Regulations to operate from March 2018

At a glance

  • The Local Government (Mobile Food Vendors) Amendment Act 2017 (Act) and the Local Government (General) (Mobile Food Vendors) Variation Regulations 2017 (Regulations) will come into operation on 1 March 2018.
  • Councils will be required to grant section 222 permits to mobile food vendors.
  • Permit conditions will be regulated, capped fees introduced, and councils required to establish location rules for trading.

After being introduced into Parliament in August 2016, the Act and Regulations have now been proclaimed and will come into operation on 1 March 2018. The Act amends the regulatory regime under section 222 of the LG Act for the granting of permits for business purposes over public roads. It aims to establish a uniform regulatory system for food trucks across all council areas in the state.

See our previous Insights Article of June 2017 for a more detailed exploration of the originating Bill.

Key Changes

The Act and Regulations provide for the following key changes to the section 222 permit regime:

  • councils will be required to grant section 222 permits to mobile food vending business upon application;
  • the permit conditions must be consistent with the Regulations and the 'location rules' adopted by the council;
  • the Regulations prevent councils from restricting the type of food sold under permits and cap permit fees at $200 / month and $2,000 / year; and
  • councils can issue expiation notices for breach of permit conditions, or can cancel permits where a breach is 'sufficiently serious'.

Prior to 1 March 2018, councils will be required to establish 'location rules' setting out where mobile food vendors can operate within the council area. These rules must comply with the Regulations.

This includes taking into account the location, number and operating hours of brick-and-mortar food businesses in the council area and the impacts of the food truck on local traffic and parking. Operators of food businesses adversely affected by the location rules can refer disputes to the Small Business Commissioner under the Act.

The Act will not apply to mobile food vendors primarily engaged in selling ice cream.

Once the new provisions are in operation, mobile food vendors who hold existing section 222 permits will be able to surrender that permit and request the issue of a fresh permit under the new regime.

For more information in relation to the new section 222 regime for mobile food vendors please contact Peter Varacalli.

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Disclaimer

The content of this newsletter is for general information purposes only and should in no way be treated as formal legal advice.