Iâ€™ve been reporting about City Councilmen Darrell Clarke and Bill Greenlee's Bill No. 100267 since it was lobbed at promoters on April 22. You know â€” the one where promoters would have to apply for a permit from the Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) 30 days before every single event (52 permit applications per year if you run a weekly event) that would cut last-minute shows or pickup parties to say nothing of house party gigs at places like Carriage House and Danger Danger Gallery. Applications would have to include detailed security plans, the promoter's business-privilege-license number, the venue's capacity and the expected crowd. The bill would hold promoters liable for the actions of the crowds at the events they promote, would requires that every permit application include the contract between the venue and the promoter making rental prices and rates for each individual promoter public record . Plus the PPD could deny a permit for any reason and without explanation up to 10 days before the event â€” no one wins. City promoters lose cred.
Itâ€™s already started.
I spoke to one food catering operator and two independent sound organizations that rent equipment. Theyâ€™re afraid to take jobs that could canceled with 10 days notice if the bill passes as is. Another promoter told me that the union workers were talking about sound and light men possibly being cut from gigs with 10 days notice. Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Marketing peeps are rumored to have expressed concerns over the bill.
Enter Patrick Rodgers â€” he of Draculaâ€™s Ball and Dancing Ferret booking and management fame. He offered to help Councilman Greenlee's staff work on specific language for a bill that would address the concerns of the police department without crippling the city's music and entertainment industries. They accepted the offer and scheduled a meeting for Wednesday to try hashing out some preliminary language.
â€śMy hope is that we wind up with essentially a new bill,â€ť Rodgers says. The first good news was that initial hearing for the bill has been moved. The June 1 L&I Committee meeting was canceled due to scheduling conflict, and, Rodgers says, â€śNo new hearing date has been set, but they have to have a meeting so I'm sure it will be soon-ish.â€ť
Even better, as of last night, Rodgersâ€™ meeting with Greenleeâ€™s people led officially to the 30-day permit rule and the 10-day cancellation rule being taken off the table.
â€śIt's dead, no longer part of the legislation,â€ť says Rodgers. â€śWe are making significant progress on other areas of concern. I go back tomorrow to work at it some more. I am optimistic that we will wind up with a bill that empowers police to go after unsafe events while not disturbing the commerce or culture of legitimate events. Anything can happen in politics, of course, but for right now, I feel that our concerns are being heard and addressed.â€ť