Two different street vendors received two different responses from the Bishop City Council in this Tale of Two Hot Dogs.
At the Bishop City Council meeting Monday night, Anne Aylesworth came before the council to get a permit to restart her business, Valley Dogs, which had been on hiatus so she could take care of an illness in the family. Her request was approved with little discussion and she plans to re-open for business between the banks on May St. on September 14th.
It was not so easy for Paige Van Velzer, who had also applied for a street vendor permit for a business that she plans to call Hot Diggity Dogs. Valley Dogs has been around for years, but Hot Diggity is just getting off the ground in Bishop.
Van Velzer had proposed selling hot dogs at numerous locations throughout town, both on public streets and private property like Bishop Motor Sports and Wye Road Feed. It turns out that even with permission from a property owner it is harder for a vendor to set up shop on private land, than it is to set up shop on a city street.
City Administrator Rick Pucci explained that in order to set up a street vendor business on private property the land owner would have to get a conditional use permit from the city which would require an environmental hearing and a planning commission hearing. Past city councils created this requirement because vendors from outside of the area were coming to Mule Days and paying to set up shop in front of various businesses which in turn led to complaints from local businesses that claimed they lost money to the street vendors.
The council did appear ready to approve part of the plan that applied to selling dogs outside the court in Bishop, but in the end the council asked Van Velzer to meet with staff to tighten up the locations where the business plans to operate.
In the spirit of fairness, Mayor Jeff Griffiths pointed out that Valley Dogs had to go through the same process when that business first applied for a permit.