Tryon considers stricter ordinance for vendors to protect existing businesses

Published 6:28 pm Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Tryon Town Council is looking at making its peddler/itinerant merchant ordinance more restrictive.

The town heard complaints last month from Goodyear Florist owner Laura Brannen, who said her business was hurt substantially when the town allowed a BiLo vendor to sell roses at $20 a dozen on Valentine&squo;s Day in a nearby parking lot.

Council reviewed last week a draft ordinance that is much more restrictive than the current ordinance, requiring temporary vendors to have a background check, post a bond, pay a $100 permit fee and provide references. Council decided to narrow the sample ordinances down and take out items members think are too strict.

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The town will have to propose a draft ordinance and ensure, most likely through its attorney or planning board, that the new ordinance does not conflict with the town code of ordinances.

The town followed procedure in issuing BiLo a permit in February after BiLo paid a $5 permit fee. Council members have said that procedure could hurt local businesses and agreed to look into solutions.