BART Permits Made Easier for Vendors

by Renee Zalles on December 14, 2005

The Board of Supervisors passed an ordinance yesterday that makes it easier for vendors to set up carts outside of the 16th and 24th Street BART Stations.

In the past, vendors were under the impression that in order to sell goods at the aforementioned stations, they needed only to obtain a permit from BART. However, according to Tomas Lee, an assistant to Supervisor Tom Ammiano, some of these vendors were later penalized, as they did not realize they also needed a permit from the San Francisco Police Department.

“It is a very schizophrenic policy and ends up with a lot of
confusion,” said Lee before the meeting.

As a result of the former policy, vendors were unaware that what they were doing was illegal and were often charged fines for not having a police permit in addition to the permit they already acquired from BART.

“It is a question of territory between BART and the San Francisco Police Department,” said Lee. “This really codifies that practice. Now, you can just apply to BART for a permit.”

People who live near the 16th and 24th Street stations have
complained that the areas have become a haven for litter, drug use, and violence. The city’s support of vendors is an attempt to help clean up the area, and vendors are convinced that they can help turn the area around.

The ordinance passed through the Board with no opposition from the Supervisors and no public commentary.

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