After police arrested fruit vendor Maria Falcón for not having a vendor’s permit while selling mangoes and kiwis at a Brooklyn subway station, according to the Street Vendor Project, an advocacy group for street vendors, the Mayor Eric Adams made a series of recommendations to relax the city’s regulations.
Adams announced a list of 16 recommendations Wednesday in a report written after six months of work by the Street Vendor Advisory Board made up of representatives from city agencies, street vendors, retail food stores, landlords, small businesses and community organizations. .
“Together, we can balance the needs of street vendors, physical businesses, and residents. These recommendations do just that by reducing red tape, creating new opportunities for street vendors to operate legally, and improving access to healthy food in all five boroughs.”
Recommendations include increased support for street vendors by the city’s Small Business Services Administration, repeal of sections of the city’s administrative code that hold street vendors accountable, and a possible expansion of vending opportunities in the municipal parking lots of the city.
Some of the recommendations, like changing city laws to eliminate criminal liability for street vendors, will require work with the City Council before they can be implemented.
According to Adams’ office, here are some of the changes the mayor will begin to implement:
- File business supports tailored to street vendors with the New York City Department of Small Business Services (SBS).
- Modernize the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) Green Cart Program to improve access to fresh produce for NYCHA residents.
- Cut red tape to simplify merchandise display requirements.
- Repeal accounting requirements and allow mobile food vendors to keep produce on top of carts.
- Repeal the criminal liability of street and food vendors.
- Direct the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) to study and test the feasibility of new mobile vending opportunities in pedestrian plazas, municipal parking lots, and metered parking spaces.
- Repeal and replace the dormant Street Vendor Review Panel with a new body that would review and modify time, place, and form restrictions on street vending, which have not been updated for decades.