Food trucks move to VCAT

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FOOD VANS RYE 11-12-2014 (CMYK) BY YANNI 03THE shire council has been embarrassed by revelations it could have stopped the controversial Rye food truck park.

Food truck traders under the banner of Australian Mobile Food Vendors Group set up on a vacant block on the corner of Weir St and Point Nepean Rd last November. The move sparked angry protests from Rye traders with Mornington Peninsula Shire saying it could not stop the food trucks.

Signs protesting the food trucks were erected on fences with one painted on a shop roof.

Now it has been revealed the food truck park needed a planning permit.

Rye eatery Baha Tacos retained Portsea legal firm Moreheads Lawyers in early January to see if it could stop the enterprise.

An application for a hearing in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal was lodged on 8 January and the case will start on 20 February.

Since Moreheads took on the case, the firm has been contacted by one of the shire’s legal firms, Maddocks, which told Moreheads the shire now wanted to take over the case as it had found the food park contravenes its planning scheme.

Moreheads declined the offer and will run the case, with the aim of stopping food truck owners setting up at Easter or again next summer.

The revelation of the shire’s error will dismay and anger Rye traders, some of whom claim the shire hung them out to dry.

On Saturday, Michael Morehead said he had been told the lease on the land would not be extended after it expired on 28 February.

“The shire has done huge backflip,” he said.

“Food truck operators have sold 500 meals a night since November, revenue taken from the cash registers of trader-ratepayers of the shire.”

The shire could not be contacted for comment before deadline.

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