06/20/08 — Fees to be charged for food vendor booths

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Fees to be charged for food vendor booths

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on June 20, 2008 1:45 PM

Effective July 1, local health departments across the state will begin collecting fees for food vendors at fairs and festivals.

State law changed the rule for permitting of food vendors, said Shane Smith, food and lodging supervisor for Environmental Health in Wayne County. The general statute applies only to temporary food establishments, he said.

"They will now be charged a $50 fee for each vendor and each festival," he explained. In the past, it had been free.

Meanwhile, all non-profit tax-exempt groups -- churches, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts-- will not be required to pay the fees, Smith said.

Normally, festival organizers notify the Environmental Health office in advance and obtain applications for each vendor. Now, Smith said, they will also be required to collect the fees ahead of time.

"We're trying to shoot for 15 days in advance, or certainly a week," he said. "We do not want to collect money on site."

The temporary food stand permit will cover the typical one- or two-day events, Smith said, but will be effective for up to 15 consecutive days.

For more information on the regulations, call the county Health Department at 731-1174.