Gloversville council OKs rules on use of city parks

GLOVERSVILLE – The Common Council on Tuesday approved amendments to the city code regarding parks and recreation areas.

At the last meeting, 1st Ward Councilwoman Robin Wentworth suggested the council amend a section of the code to make it more explicitly state how city parks and other public spaces can be used, which would eliminate some liability on the city’s part.

Wentworth said she used information from other municipalities as models for the amendments to the code.

The amendment prevents people from occupying a public right-of-way or city-owned property for a “special event” without a permit.

A “special event” is defined in the amendment as “an assembly or gathering where more than 50 people are expected to attend for entertainment, recreation, the display or sale of goods or services, to be undertaken by a person other than the city of Gloversville that may involve use or closure of public right-of-way or city-owned property, control over vehicle and pedestrian access to the event location, use of sound-amplifying devices, use of public personnel or resources for emergency response or any combination of those elements.

The amendment says a person can apply for use of a right-of-way or city-owned property for a special event only once in any three-month period at the same location, and any event will be limited to two consecutive days between the hours of 6 a.m. and 9 p.m.

It also would require the applicant to be a city-based organization or a city resident and wouldn’t allow any admission fee to be charged at the event.

A person who seeks use of a public street or city-owned property for a special event must apply for the permit with the city clerk with the following information: date and time of the event, type of special event, the area requested for use, requests for any use of public personnel or resources, type and location of any sound amplification and lighting to be used, type and location of any mobile food sales, provisions for waste disposal and toilet facilities, and a $1 million liability insurance certificate that specifically names as “supplemental insured” for the event date in question.

Any special events co-sponsored and approved by the Gloversville Recreation Commission will be covered under the city liability insurance.

The amendment also requires the permit seeker to state the form of security the applicant will furnish to guarantee payment of the cost to the city to clean and restore the site upon the applicant’s failure to do so.

After all the appropriate information is provided, the city will then review the application to ensure it is allowed under all local ordinances and make sure the event doesn’t conflict with any scheduled Recreation Commission program at the same location.

The fee for a use permit will vary based on the type of event. The city will charge a $25 fee for privately planned events, whether open or closed to the public, but permits for non-profit-sponsored events will cost nothing, and events co-sponsored and approved by the Recreation Commission also will be free.

The amendment says a decision to deny a permit may be appealed by the applicant to the Common Council, whose decision on the appeal will be final.

No one spoke at a public hearing on the proposed amendments before they were passed.

Levi Pascher can be reached by email at