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L.A. County Drops Anti-Taco Stand K-Rails to Deter Taqueros From Setting Up

1:38 PM PDT on August 25, 2022

    L.A. TACO has confirmed with an anonymous source that the County of Los Angeles Board of Supervisors, led by Hilda Solis, has dropped over two dozen concrete K-rail barriers on the southeast corner of Atlantic and Pomona Boulevards in an attempt to deter the “Tacos La Güera” stand from setting up. 

    Each K-rail concrete barrier weighs over three tons and is estimated to cost around $500 to $1,000 of taxpayer money to drop. They were placed, as early as July, approximately where the popular streetside taco stand has been set up for the last five years on the public side of the sidewalk facing the parking lot for shuttered Pep Boys auto shop.

    The anonymous source who came forward shared that the K-rails were a direct result of a complaint filed against the taqueros by Rudy’s L.A., a bar that is popular with off-duty Sheriff's Department deputies. The bar, located half a block away, dons a “Vote for Villanueva” banner.

    Outside Rudy's LA bar. Photo via Google Street View.
    Outside Rudy's LA bar. Photo via Google Street View.
    The K-bars were set up where Tacos La Güera usually sets up. Photo via Google Street View.
    The K-bars were set up where Tacos La Güera usually sets up. Photo via Google Street View.

    Undeterred by roughly $15,000 worth of concrete barriers, La Güera Taquería simply moved their operation a few feet away and continued to sell closer to the entrance of the Pep Boys. 

    Tensions between brick-and-mortar restaurants and street vendors are notorious all around Los Angeles county, sometimes leading to direct confrontations that can turn violent between the two parties. However, most of the time, the conflict occurs indirectly through multiple complaints filed to the L.A. County of Public Health by respective brick-and-mortar businesses against street vendors setting up near their operations. 

    This is the first occurrence of anti-taco infrastructure being deployed by the County that L.A. TACO has documented. It resembles anti-homeless planters and other similar architecture that the county has utilized over the years. 

    This anti-taquería scoop comes to L.A. TACO on the morning of SB 972 passing the Assembly in Sacramento, a bill that would finally update the California food code to be more inclusive of street vending practices and allow vendors to be fully permitted, including taco stands. 

    It also marks the latest development in an uptick of anti-street vending practices towards a marginalized community that has recently targeted multiple penalties, racist verbal assaults, and even death

    This part of East Los Angeles is unincorporated and supervised by Hilda Solis. In December of last year, Solis received public scrutiny for painting a curb popular with food trucks red without much notice in the City of Commerce Under public pressure, she backtracked and eventually power-washed the red paint from the curbs.  

    L.A. TACO reached out to the County of Los Angeles Board of Supervisors for comment and has not heard back.

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