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Perhaps we missed the 'Lepre-Boat' this year, but GA wonders what can be done in advance of the coming Lepre-crimewave.
First, thanks to Mayor Zimmer for reducing alcohol-fueled crime by nearly one-half from the last parade-day in 2011.
But as successful as our mayor has been in reducing the collateral damage to Hoboken when it becomes party-central to thousands from out-of-town the first weekend in March, we are facing a new phenomenon: Lepre-Crime.
The City Council must keep pace with this kind of new social-media generated event in order to protect the City and its residents.
Now, the Mumford and Sons concert brought 15,000 bodies into Hoboken. GA is certain the Mumford event promoter had event insurance to cover accidents, damage to property which resulted from the one-night event.
The fact that SIX private businesses are official Lepre-con 'participants' that promote and benefit financially from the one-day event (just like the The Mumfords' event promoter) but have no insurance coverage for their event thus no financial accountability to others for damage to private property and lastly, no accountability to harm (accidents, poisoning) to PASS-holders which may result from over-consumption of alcohol which the event encourages.
What does GA mean by that?
These Lepre-Con event promoters encourage over-indulgence in alcohol by SELLING PASSES (T-shirts) to cut long lines at their bars and to drink half-price. And they are pitching excess; no monitoring of individual patrons, just ply them with booze and send them onto the next destination.
It's all on the 'official' web site; $20 PASSES (T-Shirts) to be picked up at the "Event Kickoff bar," Scotland Yard.
Ooops, wrong one! GA forgot- those shirts were FREE and didn't get you a $6 beer at Room 84.
Folks, this is a case of the LAW not keeping up with technology; social-media generated mass gatherings. And, Lepre-Con not only involves alcohol, it is ABOUT consuming alcohol. Large quantities. Served at reduced prices with "passes" by from participating bar-owners.
The amount of crime is unacceptable- it is Lepre-Crime foisted upon us by businesses that rake in the cash without accountability and WE foot the bill.
In 2012, Lepre-Con was new. 2013 we discovered it was 'here' to stay.
GA is asking the City Council and Mayor to discuss this matter with Corporation Counsel. Is there a way to protect residents in 2014? How? If Lepre-Con is here to stay, the City should consider transferring responsibility to the beneficiaries of the event-those who are profiting from the sale of alcohol.
Maybe requiring the 'participating' businesses to buy event insurance is one measure. For the website of one such provider, Special Event Insurance (CSI):
CSI's event insurance program provides the broadest coverage at the most competitive prices available for any event. Our clients include some of the country's largest events such as Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits Festival, and The Barack Obama Inauguration. Just because we cover these large events doesn't mean that's all we do. In 2011, CSI placed coverage for over 5000 events.