Letter from Barbara Haller to Editor of Worcester
May 5, 2007
Last week's Worcesteria observations regarding my Council
request for the Administration to amend the process and requirements
for a street vendor's license causes me to further comment
on the issue. Worcesteria discussed some of the complexity
of street vendors - namely, how to encourage retail diversity
while protecting residential quality of life.
Farmers markets, carts selling high-end sunglasses, and a
street vendor selling frozen ice in busy retail areas and
during busy retail hours are very different from a food vendor
who attracts people coming from bars and nightclubs in early
morning hours, as does El Delicioso.
The situation around El Delicioso serves to illustrate a
flaw in our current regulations around street vendors. El
Delicioso has operated at the same location on Benefit Street,
at the same times - early evening through early morning -
for many years and it has been a continuous source of irritation
and bad behaviors for its neighbors. All efforts to curtail
these negative side effects have failed with one exception
- El Delicioso now has paid police details for some of its
Should a residential street be subjected to RV motor noise,
street litter, loud conversation peppered with crude language,
volume auto traffic, and the occasional (but too frequent)
argument and scuffle - at 10pm, midnight, 2am, 3am, and beyond?
I say no, and so do the affected neighbors. The fact that
El Delicioso continues to operate demonstrates that reform
My request for action from the Administration for curtailing
licenses from residential areas and/or restricting the hours
of operation to 8am through 7pm are meant to suggest ways
of reforming the present regulations and of highlighting the
problem - residential harm, especially during usual family
time and sleeping hours.
Rather than accepting that negative side affects of street
vendors are necessary so as to receive good economic and recreational
benefits, I believe that we can improve the licensing regulations
and significantly lessen affronts to residential quality of
life. That is the intent of my Council order and I look forward
to the Administration's response.