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Ice cream trucks get regulation reprieve

Some local residents don’t take childlike joy in an ice cream truck’s jingly tunes.

They want the drivers to turn off the music when they pull over and to not cruise through their neighborhoods after dark, even on short winter days.

County Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani initially followed the residents’ wishes by proposing rules that bar music while an ice cream truck is stopped and restrict curbside catering to a half-hour after nightfall or 7 p.m., whichever comes first.

But at the urging of vendors, Giunchigliani agreed to soften the rules.

She asked the commission to put off voting on the rules for two weeks, so staffers could revise them to allow ice cream sales until 7 p.m. during standard time and 8 p.m. for daylight saving time.

Music also should not be heard more than 75 feet away.

A few commissioners hinted that the neighbors perhaps should lighten up.

“We’ve got a lot of important issues,” Commissioner Steve Sisolak said. “I don’t know if this is one of them.”

One vendor said the rules as originally proposed would ruin the business.

“We will find ourselves in the unemployment lines like everyone else,” said Tammy VanderHeiden, owner of Pooters Ice Cream. “Sure, you’re going to have one or two grumpy fellows who won’t like our music.”

Drivers must play the music when they pull over to let kids and parents know they are there, VanderHeiden said. Otherwise, young patrons miss out on ice cream, and the company loses sales.

Worse yet, children who missed the truck while it was stopped might chase after it, endangering themselves, she said.

During winter, there would be barely enough time after school before darkness sets in at 4:30 p.m., she said.

Contact reporter Scott Wyland at swyland@reviewjournal.com or 702-455-4519.

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