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Food Fight: Food Truck Supporters to Ride Tom LaBonge's Bicycle Tour Tonight
Photo by R. E. ~ via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr
It's summertime and for Councilmember Tom LaBonge, it's time for what he calls "Tour LaBonge," which is a series of six bicycle rides throughout Los Angeles. Tonight's the inaugural 10-mile ride starting at City Hall at 5:30 p.m. and for food truck supporters, it's a time to let him know they are unhappy with two motions he's authored that could end up limiting where food trucks park. “I’m not against the catering trucks,” LaBonge said in a statement today. “My concern is that metered parking was installed as a solution to the limited public parking in business district. We need to find a place for these trucks to park so they don’t interfere with the flow of personal vehicles through a shopping district.”
But food truck operators and customers don't see it that way and today plan to show their support by attending today's ride. But it won't be an aggressive or rowdy protest that will take over the event and no food trucks will show up, just bicycle riders, said Matt Galler of the SoCal Mobile Food Vendors Association (SCMFVA). "We're not going to be hassling him while he's riding," he explained, hoping he'll have a chance to speak to the councilman about the motions while they ride. "We just want to show him we have a lot of supporters."
An online petition that launched this weekend already has 4661 signatures, but Geller warns that there are a lot of spam comments in there. He's sifting through them every night and as of last night, there were 1,800 legitimate ones.
LaBonge says he will host community meetings on the issue at some point in the future.
As for his other bicycle rides there will take place each Wednesday evening at 5:30 p.m. through July 21st at different locations. Next week, dubbed the "Positively Fourth Street" ride after the 1967 Bob Dylan song, the ride will showcase 4th Street, which many cyclists consider L.A.'s bicycle boulevard. Future rides will include Toluca Lake
and North Hollywood, the Miracle Mile, the LA River and Griffith Park. Each ride
will break mid-way for an ice cream treat, provided by Councilmember LaBonge but it's unlikely that food truck Coohaus will be serving those treats.