In October of this year, a group of persons operating in the Negril entertainment industry officially formalised the Negril Entertainment Association (NEA).
The objective of the NEA is to be the recognised body that deals with entertainment-related activities and issues in the Negril, Westmoreland, area. The NEA currently has 10 official and many prospective members. Of the 10 members, five make up the executive body. To become a member, persons will have to attend the NEA's regular meetings and pay a membership fee of $1,000 per month.
According to the organisation's public relations director, Ralston Barrett. the NEA was formed mainly to address the difficulties faced by promoters in Negril.
"The NEA has been formed to deal with various issues faced by the players involved in the entertainment industry in Negril. One of the main issues is the difficulty to secure event permits. What we want is parity and fair play. The same way out-of-town promoters can come here and get the necessary support to stage their events, the local promoters should be able to stage their events without any form of impediment," Barrett said.
The two persons mainly responsible for the NEA's formation are Ryan Morrison of Kush Arts (president/treasurer of the NEA) and Clive 'Kubba' Pringle of MXIII (vice-president). Both are also members of the Negril Cluster, a small, medium and micro business association.
The experienced promoters, having been approached regularly by various persons for advice on entertainment-related matters, decided to create an association to represent those in Negril's entertainment industry. While the idea was conceptualised some years ago, it was not until eight weeks ago that the NEA was fully formalised.
"For years, several promoters from the area have been plagued with various issues and many of them have sought help from Mr Pringle and Mr Morrison. Over the last two years or so, they have organised meetings with various officials, including members of the Government and the police force, to address the issues affecting the local promoters," Barrett said.
"Realising that many of the issues are still unresolved and that the people in the music business down here need proper representation, they decided to formalise the NEA. The organisation will be the voice of the entertainment sector in Negril."