Council members propose legislation to create safe party atmosphere
Louisville – Councilwoman Marianne Butler (D-15) has been working with members of LMPD, ABC, IPL and the Jefferson County Attorney’s Office to bring a level of safety and security to the “Pop-up” Parties that have been occurring throughout our community.
These parties happen in abandoned warehouses, empty storefronts and occasionally they sub-lease from a viable tenant. There is little to no trained security and the structure is not always safe.
Since beginning the research for the legislation, Councilwoman Butler has been joined by Councilwoman Mary Woolridge (D-3), Councilwoman Vicki Aubrey Welch (D-13) and Councilman David Yates (D-25) as co-sponsors.
An elderly resident called Councilwoman Butler last spring saying she heard gunfire the night before. This was only happening on the weekend. By working together they discovered there was a weekend party in an empty building close to her home. LMPD was notified and they began an investigation that included the Fire Marshall.
Unfortunately someone was shot at this location. The incident did bring to light the “Pop-up” Parties and lack of trained security.
These parties don’t happen every week and they move around the community. The promoters advertise on social media to alert attendees to the new location.
“We want youth to have an opportunity to gather and dance. We also want to make sure that it is in a safe environment that includes fire exits, trained security and sound structures;” said Councilwoman Butler.
"From a Facebook tip, LMPD was able to break up a group that was hosting "pop-up parties" near an elementary school in District 13. They arrested several people for possessing heroin, guns and a large amount of cash the day before one of the parties was supposed to happen. These people charge the young teens $5 to $10 to get into the parties and then try to get them hooked on drugs. This has got to stop!” says Councilwoman Welch.
“Our police officers have indicated that this ordnance will help them better protect our children and anytime we can get ahead of the game and stop a potential tragedy, then we need to be proactive when it comes to keeping our children safe,” says Yates.
“This is the time of year when young people will be getting out and about and coming together to have fun. However, we want to make sure that they are safe and not taken advantage of by those more interested in making money than in their safety,” says Woolridge.
Greater Louisville Inc. is supportive of the legislation.
“Greater Louisville Inc. applauds Councilwoman Butler and the Metro Council for considering pre-emptive measures to protect the health and safety of the juveniles who attend “pop-up” parties. These unregulated events appear to target children under the age of 18 and are creating an unsafe environment by not following fire code guidelines or providing security necessary for the size of the event. The language in the proposed ordinance clearly provides the necessary protections for established, licensed businesses; locations where alcoholic beverages are legally served, sold, dispensed or permitted; and private banquets, events and celebrations that do not require a fee or membership contribution. As such, GLI supports the passage of this ordinance as it protects legal businesses and fosters a positive business environment,” says Kent Oyler, CEO, Greater Louisville Inc.
The legislation was sent to the Public Safety Committee. It will be discussed at the April 1 meeting at 3:30pm. LMPD, ABC and IPL will all provide testimony about previous pop-up parties they have encountered.