The salad days of the Downtown Art Walk will probably come to a close tomorrow, when the City Council is expected to approve a Public Works Committee motion that will change the permit structure for the monthly event. Under the new proposal, the event will have to go through the special event permitting process, in which city departments bill for the resources they use for the event, reports blogdowntown. Following a fatal accident in July, the event's food truck rules were revamped. And just a year ago, the organizers considered going quarterly in the face of money obstacles.
At a meeting of the city council's Public Works committee last week, Councilmember Jose Huizar said that he considers Art Walk's past exclusion from special event permitting requirements to be unfair: "The fact of the matter is that the city has been subsidizing this event, and it has not been fair to other events that are required to go through the process."
Blogdowntown says that event costs for October are expected to be $8,731, which covers services including traffic control officers, street services inspectors on bike patrol, and fire inspectors (Councilmembers Huizar and Perry split the roughly $10,000 tab for the September Art Walk). Those costs, however, do not include the $25,000 the LAPD spends on Art Walk every month, since non-commercial events don't have to pay police costs.
Art Walk Executive Director Joe Moller is concerned that the added costs might be too much for the event to bear, saying they could "cripple and ultimately kill Art Walk." He's hoping the Downtown businesses that participate in Art Walk will cough up some of the cash to cover costs.
· Art Walk Could Owe Thousands in Fees Under Recommendation from Public Works [blogdowntown]
· Will Banning Food Trucks Make Downtown Art Walk Safer? [Curbed LA]