Vendors coming into the city for the Salem Super Cruise need to secure an event spot license, even if they're already paying for a spot on private property, such as the parking lot of a business, church or club.
City Service/Safety Director Ken Kenst wanted to clarify the rules in preparation for the Salem Super Cruise, which kicks off June 21, after city council amended the ordinance dealing with vendors and solicitors.
He also wanted to make it clear that city residents, non-profit organizations and clubs were exempt and did not have to secure a spot license for a city event if they were set up on private property, such as a church lot. Businesses in the city were also exempt if they set up on their own property to sell items, as some have in previous years.
"We're trying to level the playing field for everybody," he said.
Kenst explained that he was told last year some vendors rented spots on a club's private lot and didn't pay what other vendors had to pay. With the amendment to the ordinance, he said they all have to pay the $500 spot license fee to the Salem Super Cruise, regardless of whether they're on private property or public property.
Councilman Rick Drummond, who chairs the Rules & Ordinances Committee, said previously that the key change to the ordinance dealt with the major events clause to make it clear that a vendor setting up on private property can't circumvent the law or get around paying for a spot license from the sponsoring organization during a major community event.
The rule does not pertain to city residents, businesses or organizations setting up on their private property for personal or organizational profit during major city events. The change to the ordinance was introduced for a first reading last month, then went to the committee where there was some concern over how the rule would affect residents and non-profit groups who sometimes sell items on their properties during big city events, such as the cruise or the International Festival.
An amendment was made to redefine a vendor, exempting Salem citizens and private and public organizations, corporations, firms or partnerships within the city limits from the definition of vendor for purposes of the ordinance relating to sales on their properties during major community events.
The city Health Department will be checking food stands and will see if they have a contract for the event. Kenst said they have 35 to 40 vendors already signed up which will be set up on South Broadway, in the former Timberlanes lot, the Second Street municipal lots and the municipal lot at Ellsworth Avenue and State Street.
Vendors must apply for a contract by June 19 by calling city hall at 330-332-4241.