Busy hot dog stand not relished by all

June 17, 2009 4:01:30 AM PDT
Edwin Padilla decided to open up a little hot dog stand about three weeks ago after losing his construction job. He soon developed quite a following.

He apparently has a secret sauce that drives the lunch-time crowd crazy.

"I don't know what's in it, but whatever he puts in it, it's excellent," Maria Womer of Bethlehem said.

"Big lines for good hot dogs, we haven't had this in the city for years," Hector Mateo said.

But the established eateries along 4th Street in Bethlehem are a bit less enthusiastic about Edwin's presence.

Dozens of restaurant owners signed a petition given to the city basically saying that even if it's legal, it's simply not fair to let someone pull up a cart on a metered parking space and take their business.

"It's very frustrating. We'll set up a whole carnival in the streets, should I buy every meter and then get it zoned and approved for the city? Let's go then," Anthony Spagnollo of Sotto Santi Pizza said.

"We begin to worry to about that because are they taking our customers' parking spaces that we're paying the taxes of the city. Is he paying the same amount, so that's all we're looking at that point," Tony Silvoy of Goosey Gander Deli said.

And now, city officials are not allowing Edwin to renew his 10-day parking permit for the space.

So, yesterday he was given his first parking ticket for occupying the spot for more than the 2 hours allowed by the meter.

By law, he could receive 2 such tickets every single day.

And Edwin says his only crime is making a good hot dog.

"I got every permit that I needed. I got insurance, I got everything required by the city. They're giving me a hard time; I don't know what else to do," Padilla said.

The City Council holds a public meeting tonight and the hot dog stand is on the agenda and Edwin says he really hopes to come to an amicable solution because he says the hot dog stand isn't going anywhere.

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