OUR VIEW: More unnecessary regulation?

Buskers the latest target of city regulation writers

The City of Campbell River’s quest to regulate absolutely everything in our lives continues with the news that buskers are going to have to follow new rules.

Once again, these rules are new in that there haven’t been any in place before. It’s not that the existing regulations are being changed, updated or whatever.

No, city bureaucrats have decreed that there needs to be rules in place for busking on the streets of our fair city. Seems reasonable enough, except that it’s not something we’ve had a big problem with.

In fact, to get perspective on busking we asked Campbell River’s only busker – Owen Burgess  – what he thought. He didn’t seem to mind.

Busking is something that can bring life to city streets as long as it’s not – as Burgess says – riff-raff. Victoria is a shining example of busking as an entertainment medium for visitors to the capital’s downtown.

Perhaps the city should be putting its effort into encouraging buskers rather than regulating them.

And if this is an attempt to tap into a potential revenue source, well, it’s safe to say, it’s not going to make the city rich.

Keep in mind that the city has hit on a good thing with its Spirit Square program of music, most excellently run by Jim Creighton, that perhaps there’s no need for a busker program.

Bringing life to a city’s streets is an admirable goal but piling on potentially unecessary regulation might stifle the effort rather than the opposite. How much staff time has been put into this and is it really a good use of time?

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