SACRAMENTO—The California Assembly’s Appropriations Committee at its hearing this morning heard from lawmakers supporting 175 bills that would, in some way, impact the California state budget—but AB 332, the “mandatory barrier protection for the adult industry” bill, wasn’t one of them.
“There weren’t a lot of adult industry people present for the hearing,” noted prominent labor attorney Karen Tynan. “There was me, Princess Donna [Dolore], [Kink.com owner] Peter Acworth and some other people from Kink, but nobody else from the adult industry that I could see, so it was San Francisco-based people who were there.”
The fact that the bill was not heard today means that it goes “on suspense,” meaning that the Appropriations Committee can take it up at a later date, which according to an Appropriations Committee employee will likely be May 24.
“The committee takes up bills on suspense after it has heard all the other bills on the agenda,” he explained.
However, if the bill is not taken up on that date, it is unclear whether it can be held over for the following year’s legislative session.
“Clearly, [AB 332 sponsor Isadore] Hall didn’t have the votes today, because the bill would cost the state at least $150,000,” Tynan assessed, “so bills with that much of a fiscal impact, if they’re not considered right away, go on suspense, and it’s my impression that the bill has lost momentum, I understand.”
And where did that $150,000 figure come from?
“That’s the figure the Appropriations Committee had,” Tynan stated. “That’s the figure that the Appropriations Committee evaluated that the bill would cost—a minimum of what the bill would cost the state.”
Indeed; for a government agency or an outside contractor to put together a task force and then attempt to track down adult filming locations everywhere in the state would likely cost far more than $150,000. By comparison, Los Angeles County Health Department head Dr. Jonathan Fielding has estimated that just to set up such a task force within his own department and hire investigators to enforce compliance with LA County Measure B would cost, for the first two years of operation, more than $580,000, though some of that cost would supposedly be offset by the cost of the public health permits adult producers would be required to buy.
“So Princess Donna, Peter and me didn’t even get to testify because there was no case put on,” Tynan summarized. “So even though we were there and we were prepared, it didn’t happen, and we are going to continue our efforts and we’re still ready to go toe-to-toe if we need to.”