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Expressive Activities

 

What's Proposed?

Draft permit process*

Draft permit process showing changes from current process*

*Please note that the current draft of the proposed ordinance has a notice requirement of two days. A previous draft included a notice requirement of three business days. 

Background 

The right to engage in expressive activities is protected by the federal and state constitutions. However, local governments may put reasonable restrictions on these activities to protect public health and safety and ensure effective management of city facilities. The new permit process would cover activities meant to convey an opinion, views or ideas, such as a protest or distributing literature.
 
Currently, expressive activities on city property are covered under the city’s special events ordinance and groups of 50 or more people must have a special events permit. The new approach creates a stand-alone ordinance just for expressive activities and would require groups of 75 or more people to obtain a city expressive activity event permit. A permit would be required for expressive activities using city property, such as the use of public parks and public beaches, and streets and sidewalks if the participants do not follow traffic laws. 
 

Required Notice

Groups needing a permit would have to submit an application at least two days before the planned activity. Applicants would not be required to notify those living and working in the surrounding area.
 

Insurance

Applicants would need to purchase insurance coverage for the event. Insurance could be available through the city’s insurance provider. The applicant would pay the insurance premium. The amount would be determined by the insurance provider based on its assessment of the risk associated by size and nature of the expressive activity.
 

Fees

The city would waive all fees associated with obtaining permit and any costs for police and emergency services needed to support the activity. The applicant would be responsible for purchasing insurance coverage for the event.

At a Glance

 

Today

Proposed

Size of group requiring a permit

 50 or more

75 or more

Permit exception for news within past 48 hours

Yes

 No

Permit application due

90 days in advance

2 days in advance

Ability to waive permit deadline

Yes

Yes

Insurance required with permit

Yes

Yes

Applicant must obtain own insurance

Yes

Yes

Park use fee charged

Yes

No

Applicant to reimburse city for police and fire response costs

Yes

No

Neighbor notification required

Yes

No

Applicant agrees to pay for any loss to the city resulting from the expressive activity

Yes

No

 

Related Information 

Aug. 28, 2018, Staff Report:  Report on Special Events Ordinance as it Applies to Demonstrations
Watch the Aug. 28 City Council meeting where this was discussed

For more information, please contact Chris Hazeltine, Parks & Recreation Director, 760-434-2887