Let the record show: DeKalb County doesn't hate children after all.
After ticketing the owner of an ice cream truck — twice — for daring to offer cool treats to kids and adults, officials realized county code makes it illegal to sell any food from a cart or vehicle on county streets. Ice cream is specifically listed in the ban.
On the heels of the hottest days of the year, though, the DeKalb County Commission found a way to get more Fudgesicles and Drumsticks within residents' reach.
"I predict unanimous approval," Commissioner Lee May said of Tuesday's vote to allow vendors with a state Agriculture Department permit to operate on county roads and rights of way between noon and 8 p.m. every day.
"As long as they get a new song," Commissioner Kathie Gannon added, referring to the repeated mechanical jingle that alerts children to the prospect of frozen goodness.
The tweak in the code doesn't require any updated songs. It also does nothing for local eateries that want to peddle more adult fare from food trucks.
Only vendors selling pre-packaged goods like ice cream novelties can get the state permit. Local food trucks would need permits from the county's Board of Health, since they would offer fresh foods.
DeKalb's board has said it will permit food trucks but hasn't done so yet due to questions about county permission.
But at least one DeKalb restaurant — Nectar — is among the dozens that sell grub at the permanent Atlanta Food Truck Park near Howell Mill Road.
Next for the commission is figuring out a way to let that truck skip the commute and set up in DeKalb. But ice cream comes first.
The owner of the cited ice cream truck, who did not return calls, has been selling in Rockdale County since learning of the ban. Commissioner Larry Johnson wants him and others back in DeKalb.
"Ice cream represents America in the summer," Johnson said. "It's like watching Bugs Bunny. I guess I'm still a child at heart."