BDS DPIE Biz, January 2023

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In this issue:

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Business Spotlight with spotlight shining on title story underneath the words
Dora Boakye-Ansah works behind the counter at their authentic African boutique.

Dora Boakye-Ansah works behind the counter at their authentic African boutique.

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Business Spotlight: BDS Assists Afrique Fashion House with the Permit Process

Exterior of Afrique Fashion House

The DPIE Business Development Section continues to support local businesses. They recently assisted the Afrique Fashion House, located at 5311 Water Street in Upper Marlboro, with the permitting process. Maxwell and Dora Boakye-Ansah started their business with online sales. As their inventory and customer base increased, they moved to the Prince George’s County brick-and-mortar location, which features African clothing and custom, handcrafted pieces that fit the style, personality and lifestyle of their customers. The company specializes in contemporary African print dresses, jumpsuits, two-piece outfits, shoes and accessories for women, men, and children — all made in Ghana and Washington, D.C. For more information, visit the Afrique Fashion House website.

white space barAfrique Fashion House interior of store with a variety of African clothing, shoes and accessories

Afrique Fashion House sells men's, women's, and children's clothing and shoes, as well as accessories.

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The Inside Scoop: Food Truck Hubs Have Been Eliminated in Prince George’s County

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Graphic of a Food Truck named Big Burger with a large, plastic burger on top of the truck

Effective Tuesday, December 27, 2022, food trucks, or mobile food vending businesses, will no longer be restricted to operating in food truck hubs in Prince George’s County. In lieu of the hubs, food trucks may operate in certain areas where they have permission from a person authorized to enter into an agreement with the food truck operator or company.

Sites allowed by the County include:

• Certain office and business parks

• Industrial areas

• Commercial areas and shopping centers

• Faith-based organizations

• Membership pools and non-profit organizations; and more.

Food trucks may not vend from the side of public roadways or in unapproved locations.

DPIE no longer will issue food truck hub licenses, however the County Department of Health still requires licensure. For questions regarding FOOD SERVICE applications, including food trucks, contact 301-883-7690 or

See the legislation that eliminated the food truck hubs, CB-053-2022, Attachments: 1. B2022053 on the County Legislative/Zoning Information System (LZIS) website.

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Restaurant Temporary Outdoor Seating Area (RTOSA) Authorization Extended through April 1, 2024

RTOSA - Restaurant Outdoor Seating with graphic of couple at table and outside server

Many of the County’s restaurants offer outdoor seating during the spring and summer seasons. The Restaurant Temporary Outdoor Seating Area (RTOSA) authorization, issued in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, has been extended through April 1, 2024. Restaurants that have a valid Use and Occupancy Permit for outdoor seating but would like to modify their space to add a tent or certain heating sources are required to submit an RTOSA Revision Application.

• For information on the extension, view NOTICE: RTOSA Authorization Extended.

• Use this link to access the RTOSA Revision Permit Process Instructions and Checklist.

• For additional details and required documents on the RTOSA program, view DPIE’s Temporary Restaurant Outdoor Seating page.

Holders of outdoor seating permits issued under the legislation need to take no action to renew their RTOSA permits and will suffer no penalty if their restaurants are otherwise in compliance. Applicants for new RTOSA permits need to follow the application process.

The original authorization for RTOSA was granted by the County Council in 2020 as part of a reopening effort to allow qualifying restaurants to offer service to customers while abiding by social distancing mandates. The Council extended the authorization with passage of CB-68-2022, which became effective December 12, 2022. View the text related to the RTOSA extension legislation, CB-068-2022, by clicking on Attachment 1. B2022068 and reading pages 43-45.

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For updates, follow DPIE & DPIEBDS events on
Department of Permitting, Inspections and Enforcement - Facebook, and
DPIE YouTube.

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What's Happening: Events and Information

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Business Development Section Event

How to Obtain a Special Event Permit banner with photo of a fair with rides and food

Register to Attend!

Join the Business Development Team at 12 noon on Thursday, February 28, 2023, for a discussion on how to obtain a permit for Special Events.

Register for this free webinar at


BDS on the Move!

Nicole and Charles on the move

DPIE's Business Development Section team, Nicole Reece and Charles Cooper, have enhanced their community outreach efforts by attending business expos and conferences to help educate business owners about the permit process.

At the Black-Owned Small Business Expo, held Nov. 26, 2022, at the Showplace Arena in Upper Marlboro, Cooper made contact with several minority small business owners and entrepreneurs. Community events allow the BDS team the opportunity to network with owners of start-ups, as well as established businesses who want to locate in Prince George's County.

The BDS team coordinates with agency personnel to facilitate the completion of paperwork and document review. The team educates entrepreneurs about DPIE requirements and procedures and liaises between entrepreneurs, DPIE divisions and other government agencies.

By giving business owners support through the process, the list of businesses opening in Prince George’s County continues to grow!

If you would like assistance in locating your business in Prince George's County, contact the BDS team at or call one of the representatives.

• Nicole M. Reece, North County Representative

• Charles H. Cooper, South County Representative



Nicole and Charles, BDS representatives, presenting during a webinar

Over the last year, the BDS has conducted several webinars and prepared PowerPoint presentations for the business community on a variety of DPIE processes. Topics include Building and Use and Occupancy Permits, Inspections, Special Events, Business Licensing, and more. Customers may access the BDS presentations here.

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Resources: Business Community News

white spaceDPIE's Free ePlan Training for September adEconomic Development Corporation ad for how COVID-19 affects small businesses videoMaryland Small Business Development Center banner for informationPrince George's Chamber of Commerce monthly meetings adwhite space

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