PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Another small business is out thousands of dollars after thieves targeted a food cart twice within a few days and multiple times in the last couple months.
That food cart is located in Portland’s Central Eastside, where earlier this year, Mayor Ted Wheeler announced a 90-day reset plan to prevent crime, which kicked off in January.
The owner of Gnarlys, Chris Hudson, makes vegan burgers, fries and shakes. Hudson says he moved his cart near 10th and Stark St. in March. Since then, he’s been burglarized four times, including this week and last week.
“Being stolen from already affects you mentally,” Hudson said. “It makes you feel weird, it makes you feel a certain way. It’s like, ‘I’m a small business, why would someone do this to me?” And on top of that, I’m also stressed because I’m trying to run a small business.”
On Monday, someone stole Hudson’s propane tanks and an expensive propane regulator that he’d just replaced after it was also stolen last week. Not only does he have to cover the cost of replacing all this stuff, but he’s also not making money when he’s forced to close. He also has two employees and wants to make sure he can pay them.
The business has been closed all week but they’re hoping to reopen Friday.
“I have one brand new person, today was supposed to be his second day,” Hudson said. “My general manager, this is her only job. She puts everything in this like I do.”
Hudson also said he didn’t know about Wheeler’s 90-day reset plan.
“I can’t say I’ve seen a difference just because since moving here I’ve gone through several break-ins,” he said.
Thanks to a GoFundMe, Hudson was able to purchase and install a fryer that operates with natural gas instead of propane. Ecliptic Brewing is allowing him to hook it up to their natural gas line.
KOIN 6 asked Mayor Wheeler’s office and CEIC for a comprehensive list of the work that was completed during the three months as well as the approximate cost. The Mayor’s Office said they will send the report when it’s complete. CEIC did not respond.