First Fridays Food truck owners frustrated over new fee

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As thousands of people head to the Crossroads District for First Fridays, the food is a hotspot for a lot of people.

But now food truck operators will have to pay more to sell in the popular event. The permit fees rose from $125 to $200 per month.

“With the fees going up, I think you'll see a few less trucks down there, but at the same time I think you'll see trucks trying to get in on private lots,” said Brad Ireland, owner of Crave of Kansas City food truck.

The higher fees have him reconsidering parking his truck there.

“I can't see $200 dollars. Kind of the general rule with trucks is you don't pay more than 10 percent,” said Ireland.

But organizer Jeff Owens said the event is attracting thousands of more people by the month and they need the extra money to clean up trash and add more security.

“We just thought man, we need everybody to share us, the food trucks, the vendors, everybody chip in a little bit so we have enough funds to put on a safe festival,” Ayers said.

Owens said some vendors were caught off guard about the price hike so he sent them an apology letter.

“We were moving so fast trying to get it together, this month we sort of dropped the ball," Owens said. 

But not all food truck operators feel the same. 

KC Fooditude owner David Ayers said, “It's a nominal fee for the extra security, trash, keeping it clean and organized.”

Ayers believes,Food truck owners frustrated over new fee with the increase in popularity in First Fridays, more people will walk by his food truck 

“I believe that the organization we will get more people and I think it will make up the cost," Ayers said.

This higher fee lasts until next month but then drops back to $125 for October, and then $50 after that when there’s not as much foot traffic.

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