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Oppressive fees harm local small businesses

The current turf war between food truck vendors and brick-and-mortar restaurateurs is another sad example of why we still have a long way to go to make Buffalo a dynamic commercial and cultural venue that can sustain these two business segments, and other businesses as well. Situations like this are not surprising, given that the most recent statistics peg our unemployed workforce at 9.6 percent and that, conservatively, at least another 10 percent have either given up looking for a job and are no longer counted in the statistical unemployment charts or are working part time and need to work full time. The economic pie just keeps getting smaller for businesses in our community trying to survive.

Leave it to our local and state government officials to make it worse for these small business job creators by heaping oppressive job-killing fees upon them. I understand the need for reasonable public safety regulation for these businesses and reasonable fees to help subsidize the related costs to do so. However, the proposed fee schedules for food truck vendors border on the ridiculous. Let us also not forget the numerous and costly fees brick-and-mortar restaurants have to pay. Many of them, with the State Liquor Authority at the top of the list, should be rolled back, too.

Rather than fight each other, these two business segments should unite and figure out how to effectively work together to best utilize the favorable public opinion that exists for them in their favor to reduce, or even eliminate, some of these burdensome assessments.

Edward F. McKee

East Amherst