NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — There could be a crackdown on the dozens of costumed characters who pose for pictures with tourists in Times Square after a string of incidents.
The Times Square Alliance met with elected officials Wednesday morning to talk about growing concerns and solutions to regulate the so-called street performers.
“Our feeling is that there’s honest folks out there trying to make a living, but there’s also folks there trying to take advantage of people,” said Times Square Alliance President Tim Tompkins.
Councilman Dan Garodnick is now in the process of drafting a bill that would weed out troublesome characters by making them get licenses from the city. He also said there are copyright issues to hammer out.
“We’re going to try to deal with the line of protecting First Amendment rights and commercial speech and also protect against what has become garden variety harassment out there,” Garodnick said.
“We’ve had some conversations with the city administration, but we’ve got to speed it up,” said Tompkins. “People are getting ripped off and worse.”