In response to DMN'er Sherry Jacobson's story about the city's frustrating permit process and its effect on neighborhood farmers markets, council member Angela Hunt has requested the investigation of the permitting processes in other cities so the city council can consider changes as soon as possible.
Ed Lowe, owner of the Celebration restaurant on West Lovers Lane, recently saw a farewell sale at the Saturday-morning market in the restaurant's parking lot because the city cited it for lacking a permit. He told Jacobson that he reached out to city officials, including several city council members, but didn't get a response.
Hunt e-mailed her council colleagues, their assistants, City Manager Mary Suhm and assistant city managers Ryan Evans, Jill Jordan and A.C. Gonzalez late this morning.
Buying local produce and locally-made goods helps small businesses and our environment. However, several neighborhood farmers markets have been closed due to lack of proper city permits:
Neighborhood markets selling farmers' wares told they need permits - http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/dn/latestnews/stories/ 100309dnmetmarkets.3c7b0d9.html
While it's important that we ensure proper health and safety for our food, I suspect our permit process may not have caught up to this new means of selling food locally. I would like staff to investigate the permitting process in other cities with successful, non-centralized farmers markets, and provide this information to the council so we can consider permit changes as soon as possible. With the economy in the state that it's in, I hate to see the city have a hand in shuttering any businesses.
Please advise of the time frame for this information.
Angela Hunt Dallas City Councilmember for District 14