Philadelphia has increased its insurance coverage in relation to the upcoming Democratic National Convention to more than $250 million, with $1.2 million in police liability coverage.
The city’s Office of Risk Management shared Monday that concerns over lawsuits stemming from police action during the official nomination of Hillary Clinton for president had prompted it to seek a separate policy. It has also procured $250 million in various policies, and excess coverage of up to $ 5 million.
The police liability policy provides coverage for the city and police officers “in conjunction with errors and omissions while performing their professional duties,” said city spokesman Mike Dunn. It covers the city from Friday, to July 30.
The convention runs from July 25 to 28, but many protests are slated to start earlier, Dunn said.
Philadelphia is also drawing from its experience in 2000 as host to the Republican National Convention, during which it spent $100,000 for up to $3 million in law enforcement liability. Following the convention, 15 civil actions – some with multiple plaintiffs – were brought against the city.
The insurance carrier paid out roughly $1.8 million to resolve all actions, including legal defense and settlement costs. The values of the settlements are unknown, but Dunn said the carrier paid out less than $400,000 to settle all claims that were not dismissed or withdrawn.
This year’s insurance plan – funded by the Department of Justice’s $43 million security grant – represents an increase in overall coverage since 2000, but Philadelphia’s insurance spending is dwarfed by that of Cleveland, the host for the Republican National Convention.
Cleveland voted in late June to purchase $50 million in liability insurance, a five-fold increase, over what was originally planned, as threats of protest and even attack during the nomination of Donald Trump grow stronger.
The city Board of Control greenlit a $9.5 million fee to broker AON Risk Services Northeast, far outstripping the $1.7 million officials in Tampa, Florida spent in 2012 when they hosted the GOP convention.
That’s down to the tone of the tumultuous Republican race for the White House, said Cleveland Finance Director Sharon Dumas.
“Given the climate nationally and internationally, the risk assessment was higher than it’s been for other conventions,” Dumas told the Associated Press.
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