Los Angeles County Moves to Regulate Street Vending

Los Angeles County supervisors have tentatively approved a pair of ordinances regulating street vending in unincorporated areas.

The rules passed 4-0 with Kathryn Barger abstaining. They would require each vendor to register with the county’s Department of Economic Opportunity, adhere to certain health and safety rules, get a permit from the Department of Public Health, and pay annual fees. Supervisor Hilda Solis will introduce a motion that would have the county subsidize most of the fees for low-income vendors.

The county decriminalized street vending in 2018. However, vendors currently operate in regulatory limbo.

"We must do all we can to encourage vendors to register and enter the formal economy," said Solis. "That includes removing as many financial barriers as possible that could hinder participation. These vendors are microentrepreneurs in the truest sense, and their net revenues may be such that even a fee of a few hundred dollars represents a significant burden.”

The ordinances must be voted on a second time. If approved, they would take effect in six months.


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