It was a lively meeting Thursday morning as both proponents and opponents of food trucks in Lexington spoke out on the issue at the Hilary J. Boone center.
Members of the Bluegrass Food Truck Association, downtown restaurant owners, and a city council member all took part in the discussion that was part of The Lexington Forum's panel.
Regulations being proposed by the city's Itinerant Merchant Task Force that would limit where and when trucks could operate were discussed.
"It will shut down most of the food trucks, the 10pm to 4am limit on public property really does inhibit our ability to serve our market," said Sean Tibbetts, director of the Bluegrass Food Truck Association and a food truck operator.
Some longtime merchants say they feel like food truck operators could take advantage of recent growth in downtown Lexington.
"Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday nights are quiet in downtown Lexington. Thursday, Friday, Saturday is when we're recouping having our employees down there on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday nights," said Jim Sawyer, owner of Sawyer's restaurant.
"If it's not profitable you can pull out and not come back, we are vested in downtown, you are not," said one business owner in the crowd.
But truck operators say all they are asking for is an even playing field when it comes to doing business.
"We'd like to see the regulations streamlined and mirrored after cities like Austin, Portland, or even Louisville, where the food trucks are allowed to operate, there are minimal regulations and the regulations that are in place are in regards to cleanliness and protecting public health and safety," said Tibbetts.
The next meeting of the Itinerant Merchant Task Force is scheduled for Monday, June 11th, at one o'clock.