On January 11, Breitbart News reported that Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Mayor Eric Papenfuse (D) was venting his frustration with the NRA by withholding police security from the upcoming Great American Outdoor Show, although city officers had done security for the show “in previous years.”
ABC 27 reported Papenfuse had indicated his actions were based on the NRA’s relentless fight against gun control and the fact that the NRA donated $50,000 to the Harrisburg Police Department (HPD) for security at last year’s show, but is donating to a Civil War museum this time around.
Breitbart News spoke to the NRA about these things, and they said it is true that they are donating money to a Civil War museum this year, but only half their $50,000 donation is going there. The other half–$25,000–“is going to 3 organizations that bring either veterans, youth or disabled to experience the outdoors.” This is important information, but there is more. In fact, there is a lot more.
For example, the NRA said Papenfuse told them he wanted them to pay a 60 percent increase in fees to have HPD work this year’s show, and he wanted the NRA to pledge to grant the city of Harrisburg $50,000 a year for the next five years. The grants alone total $250,000. The NRA said Papenfuse told them this was an “all or nothing” deal. In other words, the NRA either pays 60 percent higher fees for HPD security and agrees to the $250,000 or else they get no HPD security.
The NRA said:
We offered a 33% increase over the next 3 years and a grant of $25,000 in 2015 and consideration in the following years, as it is illegal and against NRA Foundation bylaws to award multi-year grants. The mayor refused our offer. We are disappointed our more than generous offer was declined, but we are mostly disappointed that the officers we have worked with the last two years will be the ones most hurt. The NRA is the only group that has given back to the city in such a manner and still has standing offer to provide free training to city law enforcement and to bring our other community outreach programs such as NRA School Shield and Eddie Eagle for free.
A frustrated Papenfuse nixed police security at the 2016 Great American Outdoor Show.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.