D.C. Food Trucks Don't Mind Paying Taxes, Would Rather Not Get Screwed

D.C. city councilman Jack Evans is tired of waiting for his money. The chairman of the city's finance and revenue committee says new regulations on food trucks have been pending for too long, and he's ready to get down to the business of extracting cash from the burgeoning crop of food trucks cruising the city with tacos, kebabs, and BBQ in tow. Evans eloquently explained his position to The Washington Post:

“My position is, if I give you enough time and if you don’t do it, [expletive] you, I’m going to move ahead and put the tax in place,” Evans said. “That’s how I operate. People know that’s how I operate.”

The bill Evans pushed out last week, a revision of the Vendor Sales Tax Collection and Remittance Act of 2011, would apply the extra 10 percent tax tacked onto checks by bricks-and-mortar restaurants to food trucks as well, and set a minimum tax payment for all vendors. So why the hustle?

“They could have easily fixed [the licensing problem], but they choose not to,” says Josh Saltzman, co-owner of the PORC truck and its forthcoming spin-off restaurant in Columbia Heights. “But they don’t care about fixing the code and making it fair for all businesses. They care about getting retribution for businesses that have a problem with food trucks.”

The tax would kick in on October 1, and most food truckers say they don't mind paying their fair share. But they object that without regulatory clarity, their tax burden could wind up being double or triple the intent, depending on how the tax rules are enforced. 

Reason has been on the food truck beat. We even made a video!

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  • ||

    The bill Evans pushed out last week,

    Just like the turds I push out.

  • ||

    Lexington has been trying to hammer out a food truck policy for over a year now (after years of people urging them too.) All the overlapping provisions of where they can be located have left only four locations for them (and an additional 4 that are cart-only.)

    Like everything involving the city council, it has been hilari-sad to watch, like a monkey desperately trying to fuck a football.

  • Sparky||

    "Laces out, Dan!"

  • ChrisO||

    The DC government is nothing more than a criminal enterprise. Well, I suppose all governments are. The DC crew is just a little more blatant than most.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    “They’re obviously in the Central Business District, where most of the restaurants are, and you have people lined up outside, buying stuff, and they’re taking business away from the brick-and-mortar places,” Evans said about the Lobster Pound truck. “And they’re not paying any taxes.”

    Begging the question. WHY should they pay taxes?

    “My position is, if I give you enough time and if you don’t do it, [expletive] you, I’m going to move ahead and put the tax in place,” Evans said. “That’s how I operate. People know that’s how I operate.”

    Fuck procedure, I'll do what I want? How is this guy NOT employed by the Obama Administration yet?

  • Barack Obama||

    Sounds like he'd make a great IRS administrator. I'll get right on that. And thanks for the tip.

  • Loki||

    “My position is, if I give you enough time and if you don’t do it, [expletive] you, I’m going to move ahead and put the tax in place,” Evans said. “That’s how I operate. People know that’s how I operate.”

    Translation: "I'm a complete prick and everyone knows it. Also: fuck you, that's why."

  • ||

    I love food trucks, but they need to stop whining. There is no reason they shouldn't pay their fare share. I understand their strategy of tying the taxes to passage of regs, but it's all pretty transparent and getting annoying. Enough whining already!

  • Jacob||

    Pay their fair share? Sounds like BS to me. Wait, it's only bad when Obama says "fair share", right?

  • ||

    I don't understand why entrepeneurs even bother trying. Just give up and go on the dole.

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