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John Daley reportingThe fight isn't about snow cones and creamsicles. It's about noise and safety.
Nothing calls out summer like sprinklers spraying, juicy burgers on the grill, or a brass band marching up Main Street. Except, perhaps, the ice cream truck.
Don Gansen could be called the Ice Cream Man. He owns Dad's Ice Cream, which has 30 trucks, employs 40 people and distributes countless frozen treats each summer.
But this summer, he's bracing for a big dipper.
Don Gansen/ Owner, Dad's Ice Cream: "THEY DON'T WANT OUR MUSIC HEARD MORE THAN 50 FEET OUT THERE ON THE STREET. IF THEY DO THAT, IF THEY ENFORCE THAT, THEY'LL ACTUALLY BE PUTTING US OUT OF BUSINESS."
Banning ice cream trucks may sound diabolical, but in fact towns elsewhere have taken that step for similar reasons: safety of kids running to greet trucks, and the jingles, which some call loud and incessant.
The trucks hit a Rocky road when the mayor, responding to numerous complaints, suggested a new ordinance, making operators pay a registration fee, equip their trucks with safety lights and caution gates, and limiting the number of times a truck can drive by one location.
The main dispute is over a noise provision, banning tunes at a decible level that can be heard farther than 50 feet.
Josh Ewing/ Spokesman for Mayor Anderson: "WE STILL WANT KIDS TO GO OUT AND BE ABLE TO GET AN ICE CREAM CONE ON SUNDAY, ENJOY THAT TRADITION. THE IDEA IS JUST TO PUT SOME SAFETY LIMITS AND LIMITS ON THE NOISE IN PLACE SO IT CAN BE A BETTER SITUATION FOR EVERYONE."
But Gansen says the noise rules will cause business to melt away.
Don Gansen/Owner, Dad's Ice Cream: "THAT'S LIKE A SALESMAN THAT CAN'T TALK. WE DEPEND ON OUR MUSIC TO DRAW THE KIDS OUT OF THE HOUSE."
The city council is expected to take up this issue Tuesday night.
It's not clear what they'll decide and given what's at stake, things could get a little sticky.