Friday, January 8, 2010

2010-01-08 “Street Music in Santa Rosa . . . WE NEED YOU!!”

message from Aaron Milligan-Green (The Dreaded Jewbacca) []:
To all who are concerned,
The skirmish to bring street music -- and performers of all sorts -- back to Santa Rosa has not yet ceased. Last August, a solid 200+ of us rallied together and made the Renegade Art Revival come to life.
The next day we found ourselves on the front page of the Press Democrat; our aim had been accomplished. But that was merely one endeavor within the larger scheme of things and we once again call upon the community to come out and support culture and creativity in our streets!

To catch you all up to speed, since the Renegade Art Revival on August 8th the street music issue (SR city code 17-16.090) has slowly but surely been working its way behind the scenes and wriggling through the cogs and wheels of the bureaucracy.
Following the examples of other cities and what they say are the rulings from a current case on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals (Berger v. The City of Seattle), Santa Rosa has been drafting up what is meant to be a free annual street performers permit.
In my most recent contact with the City's Arts Specialist, Tara Matheny-Schuster, I was informed: " . . . some of the critical elements may change with the city attorney's final review.

However, here are some bullet points of our draft:
* Yearly permit available at no cost for downtown performers(non-amplified only)
* Performances may take place in many public areas during most of the day/evening
* Performer must be in a location that allows clear passage through an area (not blocking the sidewalk) or near entrances to open businesses * Sound level must be inaudible at a certain distance from the performer (still to be determined)
* Permitted street performers are encouraged to perform for donations, but tipping must be voluntary"

A copy of this rough draft will be brought to public forum for comment and critique sometime here in January. I have yet to nail down a specific date, but we need all those who have any inkling towards the issue to come out and give your piece of mind. Personally, I'd rather there be no paperwork or process at all, but what's stated above seems like a reasonable middle-ground. As forewarned though, what's stated above might not be what's presented at the "pubic hearing" after the city attorney gets done with it. So once again we call upon the community -- specifically your help -- to come out and call BS if things start smelling awry. Once a date and time's been set, I will make sure to spread word and you do the same. Drop me a line if you have any questions.