While regulations stall food trucks in Myrtle Beach, Conway welcomes them

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MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) — While food trucks are now allowed in Myrtle Beach, the city still hasn’t seen any open for business.

The ordinance the Myrtle Beach City Council approved back in September has several steps each food truck owner must go through before receiving their permit.

That permit allows each food truck to serve inside the city of Myrtle Beach.

There are currently six permits available, but none have been given because most food truck operators are having an issue with one major part of the ordinance.

The issue surrounds the ordinance requiring each food truck to have an affiliation with an existing, permanent commercial kitchen in the city of Myrtle Beach.

The state’s Department of Health and Environmental Control also requires food trucks to have an affiliation with a commercial kitchen, but does not require the kitchen to be in the city the truck is operating in.

This may not seem like a major deal, but for many of these food truck owner,s they already have a commercial kitchen where they store and prepare their foods, most outside the city limits.

“I’m sure it’s a matter of asking who is open to housing a food truck and I’m sure there’s plenty of restaurants in the city that would, but I already have my long-term agreement and I’m happy here. There’s no reason for me to leave,” said Drew Basilicato.

Leslie O’Neill is the owner of Be Well Meal’s & Juice Bar, which is outside of the city limits of Myrtle Beach. She has both a commercial kitchen in Carolina Forest and a food truck, but can’t operate in Myrtle Beach because of the ordinance.

As for the city of Conway, food truck permits are not limited and go through the city council for approval.

Conway also do not share the same restrictions on commercial kitchens like Myrtle Beach, giving food truck owners the option to serve in their city.

“There’s other options in Horry County. I think it’s a shame for the public of Myrtle Beach and the citizens who were really looking forward to having food trucks downtown, but ultimately we will go someplace else,” said O’Neill.

Mark Kruea, spokesperson for Myrtle Beach, said this part of the ordinance could change and is always up for discussion, but as for now the city hasn’t approved any food truck permits.

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