4/16/13 UPDATEParks Dept Lying About Performer BanThe Parks press office is sending out a knowingly inaccurate explanation about the park performer rule. The entire purpose of their statement is to keep anyone from accuratelyreporting that the rule amounts to a ban on performing in NYC Parks.They are claiming that most performers will not be affected because they are “mobilevendors.”This is a link to 2 internal PEP (Parks Enforcement Patrol) memos which were submittedin the Federal lawsuit Lederman et al v Parks Department. Both documents have beenacknowledged in sworn testimony by PEP officials as legitimate. Both describe what theParks Department considers “mobile vending,” i.e. holding art in your hands or performing while walking with nothing touching the ground. Mobile vendors are notallowed to stand in one place for more than 15 minutes.Document #1. Expressive matter enforcement plan re: mobile vendorshttp://www.scribd.com/doc/110305147/Expressive-Matter-Enforcement-PlanDocument #2. "1st Amendment Summons "Narrative"http://www.scribd.com/doc/100819633/1st-Amendment-Summons-NarrativesSee: "Performance Artists" and "Mobile Expressive Matter Vendors"In depositions PEP officials stated that artists and performers who were in the samelocation for more than 15 consecutive minutes would be summonsed.The City is lying when it claims that performers in Washington Sq Park and elsewhereare "mobile vendors" and therefore will not be affected by the new rule. None are"mobile vendors" who walk around the park singing and performing for donations. Alluse a stand, guitar case, drum set, piano or props and all stay in the same spot all day.Many are selling CDs and are thus vending by any definition.Bottom Line: The rule IS a ban on performers.4/15/13 Update:Parks Department legal department confirms performer banSEE:http://youtu.be/Q0k3lWwOXvwThis is a link to a recording made on 4/15/13. In the recording the office of the NYCDepartment of Parks Legal Counsel confirms that the Mayor’s new performer banamounts to a total ban on performing in NYC Parks.Park Performers Banned –Again! 4/11/2013The Bloomberg administration has just passed a new amendment to the Park Rules thatwill result in most performers, singers and musicians being banned from NYC Parks -
again. A Parks Dept legal document about the amendment can be read at this address:http://www.nyc.gov/html/nycrules/downloads/rules/p_dpr_02_25_13a.pdf Under the newly amended rules performers who ask for donations in Union Sq Park,Central Park, Battery Park or on the High Line must set up on one of the very limitednumber of 8’ X 3’ medallion marked spots for expressive matter vendors, aka artists.In all other NYC Parks, performers can only seek donations in locations that are 50 feetor more from a monument, statue, or fountain; 5 feet from a tree, bench, sign, wall, fence;and on a park path that is at least 15 feet wide, of which there are almost none.Washington Square Park (a prime example of the expression banning effect of thisamendment) does not have a single area where a performer or artist could stand andsimultaneously be 50 feet from any monument or fountain while being five feet from a bench, tree, sign etc. Performers are additionally banned from working on grass or on any planted area and they must be located by a curb. Regardless of which park they are in, performers can only take up a space no larger than 3’ X 8’ a rule which in itself precludesmost park performers.The Parks Department held a secretive public hearing on the amendment on April 2, 2013to which no media, performers, artists or representatives of performers were invited.For the past year lawyers for the City and the Parks Department had been trying toconvince the Federal judge in Lederman et al v Parks Department (Richard Sullivan) thatthe Parks Departments non-enforcement policy towards performers was based solely onthe Skyline ruling, a State Appeals Court decision about selling tickets to a virtualhelicopter ride inside the Empire State Building.The City’s purpose in suddenly citing Skyline to the court 3 months after having changedthe enforcement policy was an attempt to defeat a 14th Amendment equal protectionargument involving the unequal treatment of artists vs. performers under the 2010 revised park rules.The Skyline ruling:City lawyers admitted in sworn testimony to the Federal Court on 7/20/12 that Skylinehas nothing to do with parks, public property, artists or performers despite the City usingit to justify the new policy.http://www.scribd.com/doc/135229061/Skyline-OpinionHowever, the Lederman plaintiffs presented compelling evidence (see Timeline link)http://www.scribd.com/doc/135227734/Timeline-Excerptto show that City lawyers and Park officials had repeatedly perjured themselves. TheSkyline ruling (dated 2/23/12) actually occurred 3 months AFTER the policy change, as proven by newspaper articles (see timeline link) describing it in the NY Times, Daily News and The Villager. The articles are from as early as December 2011.