Akron City Council is looking to form a committee to take a look at the ongoing issue of food trucks operating within the city.
City Council President Garry Moneypenny explains to AkronNewsNow who the committee will be made up of and what they will be looking into moving forward.
"We're going to ask people from our restaurant association, individuals, people from our downtown partnership association, and others to see what kind of impact this would have."
Moneypenny says several council people have expressed an interest and that the city will reach out to the Akron Area Restaurant Association and the Downtown Akron Partnership.
Members of the food truck society have thrown their names into the ring to serve on this committee whenever it is chosen. Jeff Winer, co-owner of the Orange Truk in Copley as well as Ken Oppenheimer, CEO of the Medina-based Sushi on the Roll have expressed an interest in serving in this capacity.
Moneypenny says when some of the food truck vendors came to Council Chambers a couple weeks ago, they conducted themselves very professionally and brought up a number of good points. However, he addressed some of the negative and attacking posts on the Facebook page "Please Allow Food Trucks in Akron" with a stern message during last night's council meeting, telling them to stop with the attacking posts.
"When you go to social media and you see some of the attacks that are being done, I don't know that it's them, but it's supposed to be the website that's representing them as a whole, I personally thought they need to tone that down."
Food truck operator Jeff Winer told the operator of the Facebook page "Please Allow Food Trucks in Akron" to tone down the negative comments and to advise commenters to watch what they post. As of Monday night, the page has been taken down.
Winer, who attended the meeting says that he's pleased with how the city and its lawmaking body has been treating the he and the rest of the food truck vendors in the Akron area.
"They've been open to us since our first meeting, I'm pleased with the Mayor's office, they've made the initiative to meet with us," he said.
"It upsets me that someone is attacking the city, but I can assure you it's not us."
Winer says that he understands the concern about food trucks detracting from downtown restaurants, but says it won't keep brick-and mortar restaurants from shutting their doors.
He cited Cleveland as an example, saying there are four new restaurants as a result of starting out as food trucks.
"Restaurants are not shutting down because a food truck came into town," he explained.
Moneypenny says he hopes to announce by next week exactly who will serve on the committee.
In other news, Council passed a resolution declaring August 2013 as Summit Kids Month and encouraging the city to join in the acknowledgement . Another ordinance that passed Monday night urged the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund Names Committee to add Reserve Officer Harold Wintrow to the National Peace Officers Memorial Wall in Washington D.C. Wintrow was shot and paralyzed in the line of duty during a gunfight in the 1965. He died from an infection in 1993. Also passed was a resolution supporting the inclusion of funding for the Ohio Alliance of Boys and Girls Clubs in the State Budget.
City Council also got a special visitor as Pat Simmons, the Executive Director of the Akron Zoo came asking the council body to support the upcoming zoo levy. Simmons also brought in an armadillo "Daisy" for all to see.
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