Enhanced convenience brings ease and efficiency to the application process
AUSTIN, Texas – Mobile food vendors are an integral part of Austin's culinary scene, and their application process just got easier as the Environmental Health Services Division (EHSD) now offers walk-in services. Application reviews for mobile food vendors such as food trailers, motor vehicles and pushcarts have sky-rocketed, increasing by 87%, compared to the appointment process this time last year. The pilot program started on July 17, 2023.
“The preliminary feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, underscoring the success of the walk-in services initiative,” said Marcel Elizondo, division chief of the Austin Public Health (APH) Environmental Health Services Division (EHSD). “These enhancements align with the Austin Public Health mission to serve the community effectively, particularly small business owners.”
Previously, vendors were required to make an appointment to have their applications reviewed by the EHSD team. If vendors missed their appointment, they were required to reschedule, delaying the process for weeks due to limited availability of staff. The pilot offers resources that significantly streamline the process with more staff available for one-to-one attention, which includes bilingual personnel to benefit more than half of EHSD’s vending clients.
"It is a priority of our organization to identify opportunities for improving effectiveness and efficiency. Offering walk-in services through this program does just that," said Interim City Manager Jesús Garza. "Removing barriers to more easily do business with the City eases stress and helps fuel our City through our beloved food trucks."
Vendors are also pleased the office is available for walk-ins after noon, creating the flexibility they need to arrive after their lunch rush. The office is open 7:45 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Monday – Friday. For more information about the mobile food vendor application process and resources, visit austintexas.gov/department/mobile-food-vendors.
About the Environmental Health Services Division:
The Environmental Health Services Division (EHSD) is dedicated to safeguarding public health and environmental quality. Through effective regulations, inspections, and community engagement, EHSD strives to ensure a safe and healthy living environment for all residents of Austin, TX.