SAT: Hamburg Township Considering Public Safety Fees For Events

Hamburg Township officials are exploring the possibilities of a fee structure that will allow for added public safety at more township events.

The Parks and Recreation Committee discussed the need at their meeting Tuesday afternoon. Committee Chairman and Hamburg Township Clerk Mike Dolan said that they have identified a number of events that take place at Bennett Park near Merill Road, but only currently have a good public safety structure in place for Fun Fest. With the number of people and families that attend Manley Bennett Park for numerous events throughout the year, there is an increased need for public safety to be on hand to help with parking, helping pedestrians cross Merill Road, and any medical events that might arise when there is a large gathering.

Hamburg Township Public Safety Director and Police Chief Rick Duffany is currently looking into what other communities are doing to pass on the added cost of safety staffing. While a flat rate for any event that meets a trigger condition for additional staff is possible, Dolan said he was also interested in learning if other communities treat non-profit and for-profit events differently. Questions like could and should a non-profit community event have fees waived, while something like a for-profit sports tournament pay for safety staffing will need to be answered. The fee structured could be tiered, as well.

The township is currently finishing up a capacity study based off of available parking lot space at the Manley Bennett Park. Parks Coordinator Deby Henneman said this will help them and Chief Duffany determine how much public safety could be needed. (MK)

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