Prevalence of food trucks in Hollywood prompts outcry from some business owners

HOLLYWOOD, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Food trucks have become a mainstay of Hollywood Boulevard, but some business owners in Hollywood say the vendors on wheels have had an adverse effect on local shops and eateries.

In interviews, the owners of the retail store Rock Town and the restaurant Stefano's Two Guys From Italy said their business has suffered due to the trucks parked along the iconic street.

Stefania Alberti said the pizza shop's revenues were "a good 50 percent down from what we normally do."

Alberti noted that, for the past three to four months, food trucks have parked within a few feet of her restaurant every day.

Kelly Kight, manager at Rock Town, said she's collected about 70 signatures on a petition from business owners along Hollywood Boulevard who want the trucks to move on.

"People can't see our store," Kight said. "They drive by, they look for us, they can't find us."

Mike Zadeh, whose store sells leather goods and clothing, described the "smell of the hot dogs all day long."

"When they're boiling it, they're cooking it, it all comes in here," he said, "and we can't stand that smell."

Zadeh said he and other business owners have complained to the city's parking enforcement agency.

Parking officials have recently been out daily, issuing citations to trucks that violate the posted two-hour limit. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has also been notified.

Reyna Estrada, a food vendor employee, said her business had all of its required permits and was not breaking any laws. Estrada said she has been harassed by some business owners and has been the target of racial slurs.

Los Angeles City Councilman Mitch O'Farrell said in a statement, "We are working with the local business community and the City Attorney to ensure that parking regulations can be effectively enforced, and that Hollywood Boulevard can remain an open, equitable and safe place for everyone."
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