Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The busker plaza

Posted By on Tue, Jun 8, 2010 at 1:59 PM

If you wanted to let the world hear the sounds of your accordion, and you wanted to do it standing on a Spokane Transit Authority Plaza sidewalk, you used to need a permit.

At least, until 2004, when a lawsuit from the Center for Justice and American Civil Liberties Union forced the Spokane Transit Authority to change their tune. Protesters, street musicians, and pamphleteers were allowed to perform, agitate and pass out flyers on the sidewalks, without permits or advance notice.

But lately, street musicians — like longtime harmonica-playing activist Rick “Harpman Hatter” BoCook (pictured) — are complaining that security has been kicking the musicians off the plaza sidewalks again.

The reason, STA spokeswoman Molly Myers says, is that under the 2004 settlement, STA can still require a permit for people who bring an “apparatus.” In their summary, the ACLU cites tables and chairs as examples of apparatuses, but STA also counts things like guitar cases and amplifiers. It’s a matter of ensuring riders aren’t blocked or impeded by stuff, Myers says. (Permits are easy to get, she explains.)

BoCook maintains the rule is too vague and, therefore, unconstitutional.

Tomorrow at 2 pm, BoCook and several other street musicians will meet with the STA ombudsman, Gonzaga Law clinic instructor Terry Sawyer and several others, to discuss the issue.

  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , ,

More by Daniel Walters

  • For Your Consideration
  • For Your Consideration

    Creepy games, financial podcast pick and an important book
    • Dec 17, 2014
  • Game Changer
  • Game Changer

    Since Condon became mayor, Jan Quintrall has been responsible for some of the biggest changes in the city of Spokane — and some of its biggest controversies
    • Dec 17, 2014
  • More »


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri
Campbell House Holidays

Campbell House Holidays @ Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture

Wednesdays-Sundays. Continues through Jan. 4

All of today's events | Staff Picks

Top Topics in Bloglander

News (157)

For Fun! (68)

Music (47)

Culture (42)

Sports (23)

© 2014 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation