Penticton mobile boutique left hanging for business licence

Concerns over unfair competition has Penticton city hall blocking a local entrepreneur from obtaining a mobile vending licence.

Tracey Lloyd in the back of her Chic Mobile Boutique truck Thursday. She is upset over her inability to get a mobile vending licence from the City of Penticton.

Tracey Lloyd in the back of her Chic Mobile Boutique truck Thursday. She is upset over her inability to get a mobile vending licence from the City of Penticton.



Concerns over unfair competition has Penticton city hall blocking a local entrepreneur from obtaining a mobile vending licence.

Tracey Lloyd said she had a positive response when she first approached the city two years ago with her idea about creating a mobile boutique. But after purchasing the truck, fitting it out, having it wrapped in bright pink and renaming it Chic Mobile Boutique, she returned to the city, only to be refused a mobile vendors licence.

“We have only been able to do events like the markets in Penticton and Summerland, the Dragonboat Festival … where we have to pay a fee to go to,” said Lloyd. “Our thought is, what is the difference if it is a taco or a dress, we just want the same opportunities.”

Council considered the question this week, with a staff report recommending against changing the mobile vending bylaws to accommodate this new type of mobile business.

Though the report noted there is a worldwide trend towards mobile vending of all types, it also suggested that since a mobile shop doesn’t have the same tax, licensing and operation overhead — they represent unfair competition.

Mikaley Lloyd, Tracey’s daughter, said they have done their best to avoid duplicating what is available in Penticton already.

“The majority of our products we do bring from the U.K., New York, Australia. We try to keep it different, it is product you won’t find here. We just keep it in trends, up to date and affordable,” said Mikaley, explaining that they visited local shops as they were setting up to review what was available.

After having spent $50,000 just setting the truck up, not including their stock, the Lloyds are concerned about starting to turn a profit.

“We have done birthday parties, we’ve done the market, we’ve done the Summerland market, the Dragon Boat Festival,” said Mikaley. “We are grasping at straws, any event you want us at, we will be there.”

The Lloyds also received support from the Penticton and Wine Country Chamber of Commerce, who sent a letter to council on their behalf.

“We want to make sure Penticton is an easy place to do business, and we also want to make sure Penticton is open minded for encouraging new ways to do business,” said Mike Magnusson, chamber president. “We want to see mobile vending permits opened up to more than food trucks, because that is who it seems to be aimed at right now.”

Council members spoke in support of changing the bylaws. Coun. Tarik Sayeed suggested that if Penticton wanted to raise its ranking again as an entrepreneurial city, after having slipped to fourth in Canada, it needed to be more proactive on new ideas like this.

He said to let the market decide whether a mobile boutique would be a success or not.

“That’s what we need in Penticton,” he said. “They are also taking a risk as well. Let the population decide what is right. If they are not going to succeed, then let them not, but at least give them the chance.”

Coun. Campbell Watt said he supported the concept as well.

“There could be potentially other vendor trucks that fit a new model that we could support,” he said. “With all due respect, if we took  the wheels off and put it on the beach, we do already have a model for that. I don’t understand why we can’t make it larger.”

A limited pilot project was Coun. Max Picton’s suggestion.

“If we allow it, roll it out in a limited scope to start. Get that feedback and understanding of the impact on our community. Then we would be in a better position to make a decision on this,” said Picton.

Council voted unanimously to send the matter back to staff, and have them come forward with options for expanding mobile vending.

 

 

Just Posted

The weekly COVID-19 map for June 6 to 12. (BC CDC)
South Okanagan sees only 5 new cases in last week

The Similkameen Valley went a second week without any new cases

Sandra Krauer, Penticton Mayor John Vassilaki and Barb Hoolaeff were in Skaha Park to announce the return of Ribfest for September, 2021. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Ribfest returns to Penticton

Festival runs from Sept. 17 - 19 at Skaha Lake Park with proceeds going to new splash park

Fiery crash on the Okanagan Connector between two semis. (Facebook)
One dead after fiery Okanagan Connector crash between two semis

DriveBC estimates road won’t be open until 5 p.m.

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Second dose vaccinations accelerating throughout region: Interior Health

To date, more than 675,000 doses have been administered throughout the region

Turn out is high in advance voting for the Penticton by election taking place Saturday, June 19, 2021. (Screen shot)
Over 2,500 already voted in Penticton by-election

General voting day is Saturday, June 19

Bear wanders Kelowna on June 15. (Michelle Wallace/Facebook)
Bear climbs fence, uses crosswalk in Kelowna

The bear was spotted on Baron Road Wednesday evening

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the two patients, a man and a woman likely acquired the virus in the hospital

B.C. Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth and Attorney General David Eby attend opening of the first government-run B.C. Cannabis Store, Kamloops, Oct. 19, 2018. (B.C. government)
B.C. government to allow home cannabis delivery starting July 15

Added convenience expected to persuade buyers to ‘go legal’

Festivals Kelowna president Richard Groves and executive director Renata Mills wrap themselves in the flag during the announcement of preparations for the 2018 Canada Day festival. (Alistair Waters/Capital News)
Festivals Kelowna cancels Canada Day celebrations for second year in a row

The group cited logistic issues in their announcement

The first suspension bridge is the tallest in Canada, with a second suspension bridge just below it. The two are connected by a trail that’s just over 1 km. (Claire Palmer photo)
PHOTOS: The highest suspension bridges in Canada just opened in B.C.

The Skybridge in Golden allows visitors to take in views standing at 130 and 80 metres

Central Okanagan Public Schools is assisting with the distribution of a donation of $500 to every Grade 12 graduating student in the school district. (File photo)
Central Okanagan Grade 12 grads get $500 surprise

Anonymous donor gifts $500 to every Grade 12 student

BC Green Party leader and Cowichan Valley MLA Sonia Furstenau introduced a petition to the provincial legislature on Thursday calling for the end of old-growth logging in the province. (File photo)
BC Green leader Furstenau introduces old-growth logging petition

Party calls for the end of old-growth logging as protests in Fairy Creek continue

B.C. Premier John Horgan leaves his office for a news conference in the legislature rose garden, June 3, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. premier roasted for office budget, taxing COVID-19 benefits

Youth addiction law that triggered election hasn’t appeared

A vial containing the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is shown at a vaccination site in Marcq en Baroeul, outside Lille, northern France, Saturday, March 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Michel Spingler
mRNA vaccines ‘preferred’ for all Canadians, including as 2nd dose after AstraZeneca: NACI

New recommendations prioritizes Pfizer, Moderna in almost all cases

Most Read