How to be a Street Performer
in Los Angeles and at Venice Beach



How to be a Street Performer in Los Angeles
and at Venice Beach
by Sue Basko

Street performing is legal in Los Angeles and a license or permit is not needed. (Some special locations in the area but outside the City limits require a permit -- for example, see the blog post about performing at the 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica.)

Please be aware, however, that Los Angeles has a recent history of the police illegally arresting and harassing street performers in Hollywood. As of now, there is a court injunction prohibiting the police from doing this. Hopefully, the rights of street performers will be respected.

Venice Beach - Venice Beach is part of the City of Los Angeles. The City tried to restrict street performers at Venice Beach. A court case ensued, the City lost. You should be able to perform at Venice Beach and on the boardwalk as long as you follow the rules. The rules are rather complex, so see the law way down below on this page. It seems to say that performers are only allowed in certain areas and not too loud. It is a very long and complex law, so take some time in reading it below. Reading it, I honestly could not figure it all out. May you have better luck with it. It is called: SEC. 42.15. VENDING AND EXCESSIVE NOISE ON BEACHES PROHIBITED.

In parks: See the law far down below. Basically, in a park, you cannot use an amplifier without a permit; you cannot play any musical instrument between 10 pm and 7 am; you cannot play any musical instrument within 750 feet of any house or apartment - and this includes drums. See the whole law below.

AMPLIFIERS:

Read the "General Noise" Ordinance further below. Please note that even if you are using an amplifier at the allowed times and places, or even if you are not using an amplifier, if the noise you are making is bothersome, you can be told to leave or ticketed or arrested. The key to avoiding this is not to perform in any location for too long (one or two hours maximum in any location), and not to make any sounds that are too loud for that location. Use your sense. If you are outside someone's apartment or office banging a drum or tooting a saxophone for an hour, they are likely to call the police. Try to find commercial areas with locations that are already noisy.

Where and when you can use a regular stationary (not mounted on a truck, etc) amplifier for non-commercial music purposes:

1) In a residential area or within 500 feet of a residential area, for non-commercial music purposes, you can use an amplifier between 9 am and 4:30 pm. The amplifier must not be heard more than 200 feet away and you cannot make jarring or unusual noises. And an amplifier cannot be used within 200 feet of hospital grounds, a church or school, when that building is in use.

2) In other areas that are not within a residential area or within 500 feet of one, for noncommercial music purposes, you can use an amplifier between 7 am and 10 pm. The amplifier must not be heard more than 200 feet away and you cannot make jarring or unusual noises. And an amplifier cannot be used within 200 feet of hospital grounds, a church or school, when that building is in use.

3) KEEP IN MIND- Many areas of stores and offices have residences above the shops. This is a "residential area." Los Angeles keeps encouraging "mixed use" new construction. This is very bad for street performers and for freedom of speech. It is also bad in many other ways, such as lack of greenery and residences choked with gas fumes from commercial parking lots.

4) The ONLY sounds permitted are music or human speech, or both. The sound cannot be "loud and raucous or unreasonably jarring, disturbing, annoying or a nuisance to reasonable persons of normal sensitiveness within the area of audibility." That pretty much rules out banging on plastic buckets!

5) You cannot use an amplifier within 200 feet of any hospital grounds, church or school, when that building is in use.

Please be aware that street performing is allowed only on the public walk. Many establishments have wider walks that are privately owned. You cannot street perform on the private property. This includes Hollywood-Highland, where the public way is only the sidewalk closest to the street.

There are many street performers in the Hollywood area, including costumed characters having their photos taken with tourists for a price. The usual Costumes include Michael Jackson, Edward Scissorhands, Wonder Woman, and whatever action figure is popular at the time. Other acts include break dancers, plastic bucket bangers (they are usually asked to leave within a half hour), singers (they cannot be heard and rarely get tips), electric guitarists (good tips for classic rock anthems), and rappers trying to force people to buy their CDs.


CHECKLIST ON USING A REGULAR AMPLIFIER (not truck-mounted):

1) Are you in a residential zone or within 500 feet of one? If so, an amplifier can only be used between 9 and 4:30 pm.

2) Are you at least 500 feet from any residences? If so, an amplifier may be used from 7 am to 10 pm.

3) Are you near any hospital, church, or school? Is the building being used now? If so, you cannot use an amplifier within 200 feet of the building.

4) Is the sound you are amplifying music, a human voice, and nothing else? Is the sound pleasant, not jarring or annoying or repeated? You are only allowed to make or amplify sounds that most people would not be bothered by.

5) No amplified musical performances in the parks without a permit. See the law far below.


Here are the various laws involved. These are all from the Los Angeles Municipal Code, which is abbreviated LAMC. -- Happy Reading:

ARTICLE 5

AMPLIFIED SOUND
Section
115.01 Purpose.
115.02 Prohibition and Regulations.
SEC. 115.01. PURPOSE.
The Council enacts this legislation for the sole purpose of securing and promoting the public health, comfort, safety, and welfare of its citizenry. While recognizing that certain uses of sound amplifying equipment are protected by the constitutional rights of freedom of speech and assembly, the Council nevertheless feels obligated to reasonably regulate the use of sound amplifying equipment in order to protect the correlative constitutional rights of the citizens of this community to privacy and freedom from public nuisance of loud and unnecessary noise.
SEC. 115.02. PROHIBITION AND REGULATIONS.
It shall be unlawful for any person, other than personnel of law enforcement or governmental agencies, or permittees duly authorized to use the same pursuant to Sec. 103.111 of this Code, to install, use, or operate within the City a loudspeaker or sound amplifying equipment in a fixed or movable position or mounted upon any sound truck for the purposes of giving instructions, directions, talks, addresses, lectures, or transmitting music to any persons or assemblages of persons in or upon any public street, alley, sidewalk, park or place, or other public property except when installed, used or operated in compliance with the following provisions:
(a) In all residential zones and within 500 feet thereof, no sound amplifying equipment shall be installed, operated or used for commercial purposes at any time.
(b) The operation or use of sound amplifying equipment for noncommercial purposes in all residential zones and within 500 feet thereof, except when used for regularly scheduled operative functions by any school or for the usual and customary purposes of any church, is prohibited between the hours of 4:30 p.m. and 9:00 a.m. of the following day.
(c) In all other zones, except such portions thereof as may be included within 500 feet of any residential zone, the operation or use of sound amplifying equipment for commercial purposes is prohibited between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. of the following day.
(d) In all other zones, except such portions thereof as may be included within 500 feet of any residential zone, the operation or use of sound amplifying equipment for noncommercial purposes is prohibited between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. of the following day.
(e) The only sounds permitted shall be either music, human speech, or both.
(f) Sound emanating from sound amplifying equipment shall be limited in volume, tone and intensity as follows:
1. The sound shall not be audible at a distance in excess of 200 feet from the sound equipment.
2. In no event shall the sound be loud and raucous or unreasonably jarring, disturbing, annoying or a nuisance to reasonable persons of normal sensitiveness within the area of audibility.
(g) Except as provided in (b) above, no sound amplifying equipment shall be operated upon any property adjacent to and within 200 feet of any hospital grounds or any school or church building while in use.
(h) (Amended by Ord. No. 145,691, Eff. 5/2/74.) The operation or use of any sound amplifying equipment installed, mounted, attached or carried in or by any sound truck is further prohibited:
1. Within the Central Traffic district at any time;
2. Upon Hollywood Boulevard between Vermont Avenue and La Brea at any time;
3. Upon Wilshire Boulevard at any time;
4. Upon Sunset Boulevard at any time;
5. Upon Vine Street at any time;
6. Upon any street between the hours of 4:30 p.m. and 9:00 a.m. of the following day;
7. Upon any street on a Sunday.

ARTICLE 6
GENERAL NOISE
Section
116.01 Loud, Unnecessary and Unusual Noise.
SEC. 116.01. LOUD, UNNECESSARY AND UNUSUAL NOISE.
Notwithstanding any other provisions of this chapter and in addition thereto, it shall be unlawful for any person to willfully make or continue, or cause to be made or continued, any loud, unnecessary, and unusual noise which disturbs the peace or quiet of any neighborhood or which causes discomfort or annoyance to any reasonable person of normal sensitiveness residing in the area. The standard which may be considered in determining whether a violation of the provisions of this section exists may include, but not be limited to, the following:
(a) The level of noise;
(b) Whether the nature of the noise is usual or unusual;
(c) Whether the origin of the noise is natural or unnatural;
(d) The level and intensity of the background noise, if any;
(e) The proximity of the noise to residential sleeping facilities;
(f) The nature and zoning of the area within which the noise emanates;
(g) The density of the inhabitation of the area within which the noise emanates;
(h) The time of the day and night the noise occurs;
(i) The duration of the noise;
(j) Whether the noise is recurrent, intermittent, or constant; and
(k) Whether the noise is produced by a commercial or noncommercial activity.

SEC. 41.57. LOUD AND RAUCOUS NOISE PROHIBITED.
(Added by Ord. No. 140,731, Eff. 8/24/70.)
(a) It is unlawful for any person to cause, allow or permit the emission or transmission of any loud or raucous noise from any sound making or sound amplifying device in his possession or under his control.
(1) upon any private property, or
(2) upon any public street alley, sidewalk or thoroughfare, or
(3) in or upon any public park or other public place or property.
(b) The words “loud and raucous noise” as used herein shall mean any sound or any recording thereof when amplified or increased by any electrical, mechanical, or other device to such volume, intensity or carrying power as to unreasonably interfere with the peace and quiet of other persons within or upon any one or more of such places or areas, or as to unreasonably annoy, disturb, impair or endanger the comfort, repose, health, or safety of other persons within or upon any one or more of such places or areas.
The word “unreasonably” as used herein shall include but not be limited to, consideration of the hour, place, nature, and circumstances of the emission or transmission of any such loud and raucous noise.


SEC. 41.59. PROHIBITION AGAINST CERTAIN FORMS OF AGGRESSIVE SOLICITATION.
(Amended by Ord. No. 173,705, Eff. 1/27/01)
(a) Definitions. For purposes of this section:
(1) “Solicit, ask or beg” shall include using the spoken, written, or printed word, or bodily gestures, signs or other means with the purpose of obtaining an immediate donation of money or other thing of value or soliciting the sale of goods or services.
(2) “Public place” shall mean a place to which the public or a substantial group of persons has access, and includes, but is not limited to, any street, highway, sidewalk, parking lot, plaza, transportation facility, school, place of amusement, park, playground, and any doorway, entrance, hallway, lobby and other portion of any business establishment, an apartment house or hotel not constituting a room or apartment designed for actual residence.
(b) Aggressive Solicitation prohibited.
(1) No person shall solicit, ask or beg in an aggressive manner in any public place.
(2) “Aggressive manner” shall mean any of the following:
(A) Approaching or speaking to a person, or following a person before, during or after soliciting, asking or begging, if that conduct is intended or is likely to cause a reasonable person to
(i) fear bodily harm to oneself or to another, damage to or loss of property, or
(ii) otherwise be intimidated into giving money or other thing of value;
(B) Intentionally touching or causing physical contact with another person or an occupied vehicle without that person’s consent in the course of soliciting, asking or begging;
(C) Intentionally blocking or interfering with the safe or free passage of a pedestrian or vehicle by any means, including unreasonably causing a pedestrian or vehicle operator to take evasive action to avoid physical contact;
(D) Using violent or threatening gestures toward a person solicited either before, during, or after soliciting, asking or begging;
(E) Persisting in closely following or approaching a person, after the person solicited has been solicited and informed the solicitor by words or conduct that such person does not want to be solicited or does not want to give money or any other thing of value to the solicitor; or
(F) Using profane, offensive or abusive language which is inherently likely to provoke an immediate violent reaction, either before, during, or after solicitation.
(c) All solicitation prohibited at specified locations.
(1) Banks and ATMs. No person shall solicit, ask or beg within 15 feet of any entrance or exit of any bank, savings and loan association, credit union, or check cashing business during its business hours or within 15 feet of any automated teller machine during the time it is available for customers’ use. Provided, however, that when an automated teller machine is located within an automated teller machine facility, such distance shall be measured from the entrance or exit of the automated teller machine facility. Provided further that no person shall solicit, ask or beg within an automated teller machine facility where a reasonable person would or should know that he or she does not have the permission to do so from the owner or other person lawfully in possession of such facility. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to prohibit the lawful vending of goods and services within such areas.
(A) Definitions. For purposes of this section:
(i) “Bank” means any member bank of the Federal Reserve System, and any bank, banking association, trust company, savings bank, or other banking institution organized or operated under the laws of the United States, and any bank the deposits of which are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
(ii) “Savings and loan association” means any federal savings and loan association and any “insured institution” as defined in Section 401 of the National Housing Act, as amended, and any federal credit union as defined in Section 2 of the Federal Credit Union Act.
(iii) “Credit union” means any federal credit union and any state-chartered credit union the accounts of which are insured by the Administrator of the National Credit Union Administration.
(iv) “Check cashing business” means any person duly licensed as a check seller, bill payer, or prorater pursuant to Division 3 of the California Financial Code, commencing with section 12000.
(v) “Automated teller machine” shall mean any electronic information processing device which accepts or dispenses cash in connection with a credit, deposit, or convenience account.
(vi) “Automated teller machine facility” shall mean the area comprised of one or more automated teller machines, and any adjacent space which is made available to banking customers after regular banking hours.
(B) Exemptions. The provisions of Subdivision (c)(1) shall not apply to any unenclosed automated teller machine located within any building, structure or space whose primary purpose or function is unrelated to banking activities, including but not limited to supermarkets, airports and school buildings, provided that such automated teller machine shall be available for use only during the regular hours of operation of the building, structure or space in which such machine is located.
(2) Motor vehicles and parking lots.
(A) Motor vehicles. No person shall approach an operator or occupant of a motor vehicle for the purpose of soliciting, asking or begging while such vehicle is located in any public place.
(B) Parking lots. No person shall solicit, ask or beg in any public parking lot or structure any time after dark. “After dark” means any time from one-half hour after sunset to one-half hour before sunrise.
(C) Exemptions. Subdivision (c)(2) shall not apply to any of the following:
(i) to solicitations related to business which is being conducted on the subject premises by the owner or lawful tenants;
(ii) to solicitations related to the lawful towing of a vehicle; or
(iii) to solicitations related to emergency repairs requested by the operator or other occupant of a vehicle.
(3) Public transportation vehicles.
(A) “Public transportation vehicle” shall mean any vehicle, including a trailer bus, designed, used or maintained for carrying 10 or more persons, including the driver; or a passenger vehicle designed for carrying fewer than 10 persons, including the driver, and used to carry passengers for hire.
(B) Any person who solicits, asks or begs in any public transportation vehicle is guilty of a violation of this section.
(d) Penalty. A violation of this section is punishable as a misdemeanor or infraction, chargeable at the City Attorney’s discretion.
(e) Severability. The provisions of this ordinance are declared to be separate and severable. The invalidity of any clause, sentence, paragraph, subdivision, section or portion of this ordinance, or the invalidity of the application thereof to any person or circumstance shall not affect the validity of the remainder of this ordinance, or the validity of its application to other persons or circumstances.
(f) Non-exclusivity. Nothing in this chapter shall limit or preclude the enforcement of other applicable laws.

SEC. 42.15. VENDING AND EXCESSIVE NOISE ON BEACHES PROHIBITED.
(Title and Section Amended by Ord. No. 179,807, Eff. 5/19/08.)
A. Except as specifically allowed in this section, no person shall engage in vending upon any public beach lands or beach properties adjoining the waterfront of the Pacific Ocean, or upon any immediately adjacent boardwalk, sidewalk or public way between the southerly boundary of the City of Santa Monica and the northerly boundary of the City of El Segundo and between the northwesterly boundary of the City of Santa Monica and the northwesterly boundary of the City of Los Angeles.
1. Findings and Purpose. The City Council of the City of Los Angeles finds and declares as follows:
(a) The Venice Beach Boardwalk (Boardwalk) is a major tourist attraction in the City of Los Angeles. The Boardwalk is historically significant as a traditional public forum for its performance and visual artists, as well as other free speech activity. Unregulated vending adversely affects the historic character of the Boardwalk resulting in an economic and cultural loss to the City. Therefore, the Boardwalk requires reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions to restore its unique historic character as a center of performance, art, and other free speech activity, preserve its status as a tourist attraction, protect the local merchant economy, and ensure the safety and enjoyment of residents, visitors, advocates, artists, performers, and vendors alike. Due to its unique historical, geographical, and physical characteristics, the Boardwalk requires its own set of rules and regulations different from other public parks in the City;
(b) Unregulated vending harms the Boardwalk, and therefore must be regulated because:
(i) Tourists are deterred from visiting or shopping at the Boardwalk as they are constantly approached, solicited, and sometimes harassed by unregulated vendors. It is therefore necessary to regulate the time, place, and manner of vending on the Boardwalk, in order to ensure that tourists are not deterred from visiting or shopping at the Boardwalk;
(ii) The amount of space on the Boardwalk that is available for performing and visual artists and for political advocacy is limited due to the size of the Boardwalk and the large crowds of visitors that the Boardwalk attracts. Due to the limited amount of space, unregulated vending along the Boardwalk prevents many persons from engaging in performance, art, advocacy or other expressive activities. Prior to the City’s Board of Recreation and Parks Commission establishing a program for assignment of spaces, unregulated vending resulted in conflicting claims for the available space. There were numerous altercations over the locations and amounts of space that any one person or organization could use. Frequently, the altercations became violent requiring law enforcement response to preserve the public peace. Persons wishing to secure spaces often arrived prior to dawn and created loud noises in setting up their displays, thereby disturbing the public peace and requiring a law enforcement response. Unregulated, the Boardwalk became a place where only the strongest and earliest arrivals could secure space to exercise their rights of free expression without threat of intimidation. It is, therefore, necessary to regulate the use of the limited space on the Boardwalk to prevent conflicting claims for the space and to allocate the limited space available fairly to all who desire to use it for lawful purposes.
(iii) Tables, pushcarts, stands, or equipment of persons engaged in vending impedes the orderly movement of pedestrian traffic and may make the Boardwalk unsafe for pedestrians by limiting the City’s ability to effect crowd management and control. It is therefore necessary to regulate the use of equipment by vendors to manage the orderly movement of pedestrian traffic and avoid injuries to pedestrians;
(iv) The vendors and their equipment may impede the ingress and egress of emergency and public safety vehicles by creating physical obstacles to emergency response and administration of aid to those in need of immediate medical attention and to victims of criminal activity. It is therefore necessary to regulate vendors and their use of equipment to avoid interference with emergency response vehicles that provide assistance to individuals with medical needs and victims of criminal activity;
(v) Unregulated vending undermines the Boardwalk’s commercial life by reducing sales by local merchants operating on private property abutting and adjacent to the Boardwalk, thereby eroding the City’s tax revenues due to unfair competition, and by offering additional opportunity for the sale of stolen, defective or counterfeit merchandise. It is therefore necessary to regulate vending to protect the local merchant economy and revitalize the Boardwalk, which requires a vibrant and stable merchant, artist, performer and free speech advocacy community;
(vi) Unregulated vending causes visual clutter/blight along the Boardwalk, impedes views of the beach and the Pacific Ocean, and threatens the City’s ability to attract tourists and preserve businesses along the Boardwalk. It is therefore necessary to regulate the number of vendors, the size of their equipment, and displays, and the location of vending activity;
(vii) Unregulated vending creates unnecessary, excessive and annoying noise on the Boardwalk, is detrimental to the public health, welfare and safety and contrary to the public interest, harms residents, businesses and the historic character of the Boardwalk, and diminishes the quality of life for those who visit, live or work on or near the Boardwalk. It is therefore necessary to establish restrictions on noise at the Boardwalk;
(viii) The Recreation Area between Horizon Avenue and 20th Avenue is a site that frequently holds special events. It is the location of a police substation where vehicles require the ability for unobstructed ingress and egress. It is also where many people engage in skateboarding, paddle tennis, and other sports and exercise. The Recreation Area between Horizon Avenue and 20th Avenue, therefore, requires a specialpermit system to regulate activity in that area, and prevent incompatible uses of space.
2. Action. To address these findings and purposes, the City has created reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions on vending. To preserve the Boardwalk’s rich history of fostering new artists, performance, and other free speech activity, the City has divided the available space on the Boardwalk between performers, advocates, artists, and those vending expressive items inextricably intertwined with a political, philosophical, religious or ideological message. Therefore, the City has:
(a) Created areas where persons can perform, engage in traditional expressive speech, and petitioning activities, and vend the following expressive items: newspapers, leaflets, pamphlets, bumper stickers, patches, buttons, or books created by the vendor or recordings of the vendor’s own performances (P-Zones);
(b) Created areas where persons may engage in activities permissible in the P-Zone, and also engage in vending of expressive items created by the vendor, or the vending of expressive items that are inextricably intertwined with the vendor’s message (I-Zones); and
(c) Created reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions on activities outside those areas.
B. P-Zones.
1. Vending any item in the P-Zones not exempted by Subdivision 2. of this subsection is a violation of this section and is subject to the penalties described in Subsection H.
2. P-Zone Exemptions. Subject to the permit requirements of Subdivision 4. of this subsection:
(a) Any person may:
(i) Vend newspapers, leaflets, pamphlets, bumper stickers, patches, or buttons; and
(ii) Vend books created by the vendor.
(b) Performers may vend audio, video, or other recordings of their performances; and
(c) Any person may give away food, goods, merchandise, services, or performances, free of charge, and may ask for a donation subject to the condition that they shall display, visible to the public, a placard provided by the City stating: “Donations appreciated. No contribution required.” A person giving away items may limit the items given away to no less than one item per person per day.
3. P-Zone Spaces. The Board will designate spaces on the Boardwalk for allocation in the P-Zones according to rules promulgated by the Board consistent with this section. There shall be at least 105 spaces designated in the P-Zones.
4. P-Zone Permit System. The allocation of spaces shall be determined according to the following permit system:
(a) Permits required for assigned spaces in the P-Zones during Peak Season. During the “peak season”, defined as the Saturday before Memorial Day through November 1 of each year, any person desiring to occupy an assigned space shall obtain a permit, and, spaces shall be assigned to persons possessing a permit according to the rules promulgated by the Board consistent with this section. P-Zone permits shall not be valid in the I-Zones.
(b) Exception: During peak season after 12:00 p.m. (noon), any person, whether or not a permit holder, may use any unoccupied space in the P-Zones subject to all other provisions of this section; provided that if the permit holder to which the space was assigned arrives after noon and asks to use his/her assigned space, the person not assigned the space shall immediately relinquish the space to the assigned permit holder.
(c) Permit Applications for the P-Zones during Peak Season. An application requesting a non-transferable peak season permit for the P-Zones shall only require the applicant’s name.
5. Unassigned Spaces in the P-Zones. Ten of the 105 designated P-Zone spaces shall be made available on a first-come, first-served basis for persons engaged in activity that is not vending and does not use amplified sound. Two of those spaces shall be made available for persons giving away food.
C. I-Zones.
1. Vending any item in the I-Zones not exempted by Subdivision 2. of this subsection is a violation of this section and is subject to the penalties described in Subsection G.
2. I-Zone exemptions. Subject to the permit requirements of Subdivision 4. of this subsection:
(a) All activities permissible in the P-Zones are also permissible in the I-Zones; and
(b) Any person may vend the following items: expressive items, which have been created, written or composed by the person, or are expressive items inextricably intertwined with the message of the person vending the items. These items may include, but are not limited to, books, cassettes tapes, compact discs, digital video discs, paintings, photographs and sculptures. For purposes of this paragraph, expressive items shall be deemed to have been created by the vendor only if they have been predominantly authored, performed, recorded, filmed, or otherwise made or assembled by the vendor.
3. I-Zone Spaces. The Board will designate spaces on the Boardwalk for allocation in the I-Zones according to rules promulgated by the Board consistent with this section. There shall be at least 100 spaces designated in the I-Zones.
4. I-Zone Permit System. The allocation of spaces shall be determined according to the following permit system:
(a) Permits required for use of space in the I-Zones. I-Zone permits shall not be valid in P-Zones to vend items only permitted to be vended in the I-Zones. However, I-Zone permits may be used in P-Zones for any permissible P-Zone purpose. No person shall occupy space in the I-Zone unless that person possesses a valid permit issued by the Department of Recreation and Parks. After 12:00 p.m. (noon), any I-Zone permit holder may use an unoccupied space in the I-Zone subject to all other provisions of this section; provided that if the permit holder to which the space was assigned arrives after noon and requests to use his/her assigned space, the person not assigned the space shall immediately relinquish the space to the assigned permit holder.
(b) Permit Applications for the I-Zones. Any person desiring to occupy an assigned space to vend items in the I-Zones shall file an application for a non-transferable permit with the Department of Recreation and Parks. The application shall require:
(i) The applicant’s name and a mailing address at which the City may provide notice to the applicant;
(ii) A description of the goods or merchandise for which the applicant seeks a permit;
(iii) A declaration that the goods or merchandise for which the applicant seeks a permit are expressive items of the applicant’s own creation or are inextricably intertwined with the message of the applicant.
D. Special Rules for Areas on the Boardwalk Outside the P-Zones and I-Zones.
1. Areas Outside the P-Zones and I-Zones.
(a) Activities allowed without equipment on the Boardwalk outside the P-Zones, I-Zones and pagodas. The following activity may occur in all areas covered by this section outside the P-Zones, I-Zones and pagodas, provided that no person may set up a display table, easel, stand, equipment or other furniture, use a pushcart or other vehicle or place any item on the property defined in Subsection A. except as provided in Paragraph b. of this subdivision:
(i) Any person may vend newspapers, leaflets, pamphlets, bumper stickers, patches, or buttons, and books or recordings created by vendor.
(ii) Any person may vend any other expressive item that is inextricably intertwined with the vendor’s message.
(iii) Any person may engage in any activity permissible in the P-Zones.
(b) Activities allowed with limited equipment on the Westside of the Boardwalk outside the P-Zones, I-Zones or pagodas. Any activity permitted in the P-Zones may occur on the Westside of the Boardwalk outside of the P-Zones, I-Zones or pagodas so long as the activity is not vending and does not substantially impede or obstruct pedestrian or vehicular traffic, subject to reasonable size and height restrictions on any table, easel, or other furniture in connection with that activity, as set forth in the Program Rules.
2. Special Permit System for the Recreation Area between Horizon Avenue and 20th Avenue.
(a) A permit is required for any activity in the Recreation Area that is engaged in by and/or attracts a crowd of 15 or more people.
(b) No permit is required for an activity in the Recreation Area that is engaged in by and/or attracts a crowd of fewer than 15 people. The activity shall not interfere with any other activity in the Recreation Area.
(c) No vending, no amplified sound, and no display tables, easels, stands, equipment, pushcarts or other vehicles, or structures shall be allowed in the Recreation Area without a permit.
E. Use of City Property for Vending, Performance, or Display Prohibited. No person shall use or obstruct access to any City-owned or maintained street furniture or structure, including any pagoda, for vending, performance, or display of anything whatsoever, including but not limited to, use of any bench, planter or trash receptacle installed on public property.
F. Noise Regulation for all property on or immediately adjacent to the Boardwalk.
1. No person, group or business shall create any noise, or allow the creation of any noise, which causes the noise level to exceed the following Lmax levels between 9:00 a.m. and sunset:
(a) 75 dBA, when measured at a minimum distance of 25 feet from the source of the noise; or,
(b) 96 dBA, when measured at a minimum distance of one foot from the source of the noise.
When Lmax levels are measured from a building located on private property adjacent to the Boardwalk, the measurement shall be taken from the property line dividing the private property and the Boardwalk.
2. Nothing in this section shall be construed as prohibiting the City from enforcing other provisions of this Code relating to noise. At all times, the provisions of Chapter 11 of the Los Angeles Municipal Code, Sections 111 through 115, inclusive, and Los Angeles Municipal Code Sections 41.42, 41.57, 53.63, 63.44 relating to noise shall apply.
3. No person or business shall interfere with or resist the taking of any noise measurement authorized by this section.
4. Amplified sound may be generated in the following designated P-Zone spaces subject to the other requirements of this section, and as long as any speaker or sound reproduction system is placed on the ground and is no more than three feet in height:
(a) Between 17th Avenue and Horizon Avenue;
(b) Between Breeze Avenue and Park Avenue.
5. Except as allowed by subdivision 4. of this subsection, amplified sound is prohibited on all property described in subsection A. of this section.
6. Notwithstanding the regulations regarding amplified sound, the City may issue special event permits.
G. Enforcement.
1. Conduct subject to administrative enforcement. The Board may adopt rules consistent with this section for space allocation and reasonable time, place and manner regulation of the I-Zones and the P-Zones. Except as provided in Subsection H. and Subdivision 2. of this subsection, violations of rules promulgated by the Board shall be subject to administrative enforcement by the City as follows:
(a) A permit may be revoked in accordance with the Program Rules adopted by the Board for violations of any provision of this section or the Program Rules. Revocation shall occur upon a third violation of a Program Rule, a third violation of the conditions set forth in this section, or a combination of any three violations of the Program Rules or conditions set forth in this section. A notice of violation of the Program Rules may be appealed to the Department of Recreation and Parks District Supervisor. Revocation of a permit may be appealed to the Panel of Vending Permit Appeals. No action of the Panel of Vending Permit Appeals may be taken by less than a majority of its members. The conclusion of the applicable appeal process shall constitute an exhaustion of administrative remedies pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure Section 1094.5.
(b) Only those persons who obtain I-Zone permits may invoke the administrative appeals process described in Subparagraph (a) of this subdivision. Persons vending without a permit in the I-Zones shall be subject to the penalties described in Subsection H.
2. Conduct subject to criminal penalties. Conduct in the P-Zones or the I-Zones that is prohibited by the following paragraphs shall be subject to the penalties described in Subsection H.:
(a) No person shall place or allow anything in any designated space that extends beyond the boundaries of the designated space.
(b) No person shall place or allow any item (except an umbrella or other sun shade) exceeding four feet above ground in any designated space, nor shall any person cause or allow a designated space to be enclosed on more than two sides.
(c) No person occupying a space shall leave that space for a period longer than 45 minutes without first removing all items from the space.
(d) No person, business or group shall occupy more than a single space at any given time, nor shall any person, business or group solicit another person to obtain or occupy a space on their behalf.
(e) No person shall purchase, sell, barter or exchange any assigned space with any other person.
(f) No person shall set up or take down or use a designated space between sunset and 9:00 a.m.
3. No person shall alter or reproduce any permit issued pursuant to this section, nor shall any person possess an altered, reproduced or falsified permit document. A violation of this paragraph shall be subject to the penalties described in Subsection H.
H. Violations. Except for the administrative enforcement provided in Subdivision 1. of Subsection G., any person violating a provision of this section shall be subject to the following penalties:
1. First offense. Infraction.
2. Second offense. Infraction.
3. Subsequent offenses. Misdemeanor. The violation of any provision, which would otherwise be an infraction, shall be a misdemeanor if the person who has violated that provision has previously been convicted of two or more violations of this section within the 24-month period immediately preceding the current offense. For purposes of this subsection, a bail forfeiture shall be deemed to be a conviction of the offense charged.
I. Opening and Closing Hours. No person shall engage in activities not otherwise prohibited by this section between the hours of 10:30 p.m. and 9:00 a.m.
J. Posted Notice. The City shall post signs in the P-Zones and the I-Zones providing notice of the rules of use of each Zone consistent with this section.
K. Severability. If any provision or application of a provision of this section is held invalid, the remainder of the section and application of its provisions will not be affected.
L. Definitions. For purposes of this section, the following words or phrases shall have the following meanings:
1. Performance / Free Speech Zones (P-Zones). Areas on the Boardwalk designated by the City, located south of Clubhouse Avenue and north of 17th Avenue, south of Park Avenue and north of Wavecrest Avenue, and south of Paloma Avenue and north of Sunset Avenue in which the City will allocate spaces for performers and speakers. Vending shall be prohibited in this area except as provided in Subdivision 2. of Subsection B. of this section.
2. Inextricably Intertwined Speech Zones (I-Zones). Areas on the Boardwalk designated by the City, located south of Wavecrest Avenue and north of Clubhouse Avenue, south of Sunset Avenue and north of Park Avenue, and south of Navy Street and north of Paloma Avenue, in which the City will allocate spaces for the vending of expressive items that are created by the vendor or inextricably intertwined with speech. Vending shall be prohibited in this area except as provided in Subdivision 2. of Subsection C. of this section.
3. Amplified Sound. Sound produced with sound amplifying equipment as defined in Los Angeles Municipal Code Section 111.01(j), and shall not include sound produced solely by acoustical musical instruments.
4. Board. The City’s Board of Recreation and Park Commissioners.
5. City. The City of Los Angeles, a municipal corporation, acting by or through any of its officers, employees or agencies, including, but not limited to, the City’s Department of Recreation and Parks.
6. Donation. A gift; a voluntary act which is not required and does not require anything in return.
7. Food. Any type of edible substance or beverage.
8. Goods or Merchandise. Any items that are not food.
9. Pagodas. The structures, including the ten foot area fronting each structure, located on the Boardwalk at Clubhouse Avenue, Breeze Avenue, Park Avenue, Sunset Avenue and Dudley Avenue.
10. Panel of Vending Permit Appeals. A three-person board consisting of: a representative from the Park Advisory Board designated by the Board of Recreation and Park Commissioners; a Boardwalk community member designated by the City Councilmember of the district in which the Boardwalk is located; and the General Manager of the Department of Recreation and Parks or the General Manager’s designee.
11. Person. An individual or an organization composed of two or more individuals.
12. Program Rules. Rules adopted by the Board consistent with this section.
13. Pushcart. Any non-motorized mobile device that holds food, goods or merchandise as defined in this subsection, and is used to vend.
14. Recreation Area between Horizon Avenue and 20th Avenue. This is the area that includes a police substation, Muscle Beach, paddle tennis courts, and other recreational facilities. This does not include the Westside of the Boardwalk immediately adjacent to this area.
15. Vend or Vending. To sell, offer for sale, expose for sale, solicit offers to purchase, or to barter food, goods, merchandise or services in any area from a stand, table, pushcart, motor vehicle, bicycle, or by a person with or without the use of any other device or other method of transportation, or to require someone to pay a fee or to set, negotiate, or establish a fee before providing goods or services, even if characterized by the vendor as a donation.
16. Vendor. A person who vends. This includes a vendor who is an employee or agent of another.
17. Westside of the Boardwalk. The area on the ocean-side of the Venice Beach Boardwalk.






SEC. 63.44. REGULATIONS AFFECTING PARK AND RECREATION AREAS.
(Added by Ord. No. 153,027, Eff. 11/16/79.)
A. Definitions: As used in this section:
“Beach” shall include public seashore and shoreline areas bordering the Pacific Ocean that are owned, managed or controlled by the City. (Added by Ord. No. 163,039, Eff. 1/17/88.)
“Park” shall include every public park, roadside rest area, playground, zoological garden, ocean, beach or other recreational facility area, together with any parking lot, reservoir pier, swimming pool, golf course, court, field, bridle path, trail, or other recreational facility, or structure thereon, in the City of Los Angeles and under the control, operation or management of the Board of Recreation and Park Commissioners, the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation, the Los Angeles County Department of Beaches, or the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Commission. “Park” does not include any State Historic Park located within the City of Los Angeles.
“Board” shall mean the Board of Recreation and Park Commissioners.
B. Within the limits of any park or other City-owned Harbor Department designated and controlled property within the City of Los Angeles: (Amended by Ord. No. 174,737, Eff. 9/9/02.)
4. No person shall play or utilize any sound amplifying system except within or upon an area or facility set aside for such purpose by the Board, Department or Commission. For the purposes of this and the next subdivision, “sound amplifying system” shall mean and include any system of electrical hookup or connection, loud speaker system or equipment, sound amplifying system, and any apparatus, equipment, device, instrument, or machine designed for or intended to be used for the purpose of amplifying the sound or increasing the volume of the human voice, musical tone, vibration or sound wave. This subdivision shall not apply to the regular and customary use of portable radios, televisions, record players or tape recorders played or operated in such places and at such times so as not to disturb other persons in their permitted uses of the park.
5. No person shall hold or conduct any musical event or concert in which any sound amplifying system is utilized without first obtaining a written permit to do so from the Board, Department or Commission. The application for such musical event permit shall state:
The name of the person or persons applying for the permit; the particular park and location therein at which the musical event is proposed to take place; the date and time of the event; the number of persons who will perform at such musical event; and the size of the expected audience. A written permit for the musical event shall be issued upon reasonable terms and conditions except when:
(a) The location requested has been previously reserved for the same date and time by another person or organization for a particular activity; or
(b) The size of the audience reasonably expected to attend the musical event will exceed the capacity of the location requested.
6. No person shall play any musical instrument between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. within seven hundred and fifty (750) feet of any structure used for dwelling purposes, except within or upon an area or facility set aside for this purpose by the Board or Department. For purposes of this subdivision, the term “musical instrument” includes but is not limited to drums and other percussion devices.

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