Millville Town Council approves new special-events fee

For-profit vendors will now pay a fee for displaying their wares in the Town of Millville.

On May 10, the Millville Town Council approved a $25 event license, per vendor, per day. This is Millville’s first peddler license of this kind, for food trucks and other vendors.

Food trucks are still prohibited from parking in the town on a regular day. But they could participate in a special event, as could other craftspeople and vendors.

Non-profit groups and their events, such as a fire company festival, are exempt from the fee. But a Realtor’s customer-appreciation day would require $25 permits for every for-profit vendor.

“Food-vendor trucks is an up-and-coming [thing] these days,” Town Manager Debbie Botchie had said in April. “We find it very unfair that food trucks can come into a municipality … and sell their wares. They don’t pay” any permit or tax or income tax, she noted.

The new fee makes up for that.

The ordinance is just aimed at special events, not yard sales. Yard sales and nonprofit groups, such as the Girl Scouts, are exempted from the fee.

The town council unanimously approved the measure (with Councilwoman Susan Brewer absent).

Farmers’ market out

The Millville Farmers’ Market will be on hiatus this summer. Road construction on Route 26 and low attendance caused the market to end several weeks early last year, in August of 2015. Organizers decided that traffic conditions won’t improve significantly this summer, either.

They will decide later whether the market will return in 2017. In the online announcement, they thanked the public for their continued interest and enthusiasm for the weekly event.

The market was previously hosted at town hall and the Millville fire hall, although representatives of the Millville By the Sea development have offered event grounds to the Town that could be perfect for future markets.

Construction contract close to approval

There was little progress with the town hall addition this month. Council members said they didn’t feel well-enough informed to approve the $1,107,871 construction contract with Harkins Contracting Company. Harkins was the winning bidder for the 210-day project.

Council members asked about the seemingly high cost for the 4,885-square-foot building. But the specific reasoning (fill dirt, anticipated poor soil quality, concrete and other site work) is detailed in the project manual that was only referenced, not listed, in the draft contract. Discussion will continue at the May 24 workshop.