Walter Mencken 11 a.m., May 24
Non-profit fights a city proposal to do away with exemptions for entertainment permits for not for profit organizations.
The San Diego Police Department hopes to raise some extra cash by eliminating the exemption that allows non-profit organizations to throw fundraisers and other entertainment events without having to pay for a city permit.
To boost their argument, San Diego Police Department officials say the exemptions provided to non-profits violates state Proposition 26-- claiming that those paying for permits are subsidizing those non-profit organizations because of the need to provide police presence.
But some community non-profits disagree. One such organization, the Worldbeat Cultural Center in Balboa Park, looks to defeat that proposal.
Today, the non-profit dedicated to African African-American arts and culture posted an online petition at signon.org looking for help.
"San Diego Police Department is currently attempting to remove exemptions for Non-Profits, holding fundraisers, forcing them to pay large fees and possibly declining to approve thousands of small fundraising events a year without providing the citizens the choice to vote on the issue under false pretense of Prop 26," reads the online petition.
Makeda Cheatom, from Worldbeat, also appeared at a council hearing on December 4 and urged city councilmembers to reconsider doing away with the exemption.
"Most non-profits didn't know about this," Cheatom said. "We didn't know until we received a notice on our door on Friday [December 1]. We are struggling right now. We can't take out permits. You have to protect your non-profits that are here to serve the community."
The city council is expected to hear a revised proposal in coming weeks.
The petition currently has 88 signatures.
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