is mayor phil gordon a racist idiot or just an idiot?

Gordon still against later vendor hours

Yvonne Wingett
The Arizona Republic
Sept. 2, 2004 12:00 AM

Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon on Wednesday reaffirmed his opposition to extending the operating hours of mobile food vendors at a press conference for the Valley's Spanish-language media.

The mayor's remarks came one day after Union Pochteca, a coalition representing about 40 taqueros asked Phoenix to extend its taco vending hours to match the state's new 2 a.m. last-call drinking law.

"At this time, I do not support further extending the hours of operation for any kind of mobile vendor that wishes to sell its products on an open area," said Gordon in a prepared statement. "My goal is to focus on helping and supporting those mobile vendors who wish to operate in a permanent location."

Permanent retail structures, he said, encourage neighborhood stability and more successful businesses.

The city's estimated 68 licensed mobile vendors must shut down by 2 a.m. Since Aug. 25, when the state pushed back bar hours so the last call for alcohol is 2 a.m., an hour later, the taqueros have argued they are losing business.

City officials are wearing "cultural blinders," taqueros and Hispanic leaders have charged. "Deep down, it's a cultural abhorrence with anything that has to do with la cultura," said Salvador Reza of the Hispanic-based non-profit Tonatierra.

Gordon said that's an "unfair" argument and said the city could, in the future, consider the request.

"I was the first elected official to meet with the group to advocate the cause when their pleas were falling on deaf ears," he said.

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