Tampa PD officers to do Beyonce concert security

Posted at 5:24 PM, Feb 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-19 17:56:28-05
Some 20 to 30 Tampa Police officers have volunteered to work overtime to do security at the upcoming Beyonce concert at the Raymond James Stadium in April, according to a spokesperson with the Tampa Police Department.
Tampa Police Department spokesperson Steve Hegarty is disputing reports that officers are refusing to sign up amidst controversy surrounding the superstar performer, who was criticized by police officers recently for work that some describe as "anti-police."
However, there is no disputing that some police officers in Tampa are offended by Beyonce's music video, including the head of the Tampa Police Officer union.
"The Tampa PBA is disgusted with Beyonce's performance on the night of the Super Bowl and equally disgusted with her new video 'Formation,' said  Vinny Gericitano, the President of the Tampa Police Benevolent Association, adding, "We urge all law enforcement officers to boycott the purchase of Beyonce's music and the purchase of tickets for her performances.'
Unlike a similar boycott announced by a police officer union in Miami, the Tampa union president is not calling for a boycott from officers actually working overtime at the event.
Officers who volunteer to work at the Beyonce concert get paid $34 per hour in overtime, says a police spokesperson.
If a major incident were to occur, a standard Tampa Police response would be in order as well.
Police say there is no expectation that the event would be fully-staffed more than two months before the show. 
A spokesperson with the Tampa Sports Authority, which operates the Raymond James Stadium, says that as a matter of policy the organization never discusses security measures, only saying "all events at Raymond James Stadium are constantly monitored by our local,state and federal law enforcement agencies to insure that our facility provides a safe environment to our fans."
A law enforcement official with insight into Raymond James Stadium security says big events, like concerts and Bucs games, requires "a couple hundred' uniformed personnel.
Tampa Police admit that they still need "a lot more" police officers to volunteer.
If few officers volunteer? Tampa Police may resort to assigning officers to work, or the Tampa Sports Authority will simply have to get security from elsewhere.
The event is being organized by LiveNation, which did not respond to requests for information about security requests. LiveNation also did not respond to a request for information about the number of concert tickets sold so far for the April 29 event.