Strip club restrictions bill to be heard by Senate committee
by Dennis Sharkey
The Kansas House of Representatives moved a bill forward last week that will regulate sexually oriented businesses.
The Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee has received HB 2107, otherwise known as the Kansas Community Defense Act, after it passed the House last week 91-28. Rep. Ramon Gonzalez, R-Perry, voted in favor of the bill.
Although the bill is not on the committee’s calendar, it is expected to be heard by the end of this week.
A similar bill passed the House last year but stalled in the Senate on a 20-20 vote.
Some who voted against the bill said they didn’t have enough time to review the bill while others, mainly Republicans, voted against the bill because they believed it was interfering with private business.
The minority in the House that voted against the bill were Republicans and Democrats.
“Although (we are) sympathetic to the issues discussed during the debate, (our) opposition to this bill is best summed up by the Ronald Reagan quote where he said, ‘Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves,’” a group of Republicans expressed in their nay vote.
A group of Democrats opposed to the bill agreed with their opponents on the other side of the aisle that also voted against the bill.
“HB 2107 addresses an issue that has been and should be regulated at
the local level. This legislation represents unnecessary intrusion by state government,” they said.
Some amendments were made to the bill before the House gave final approval.
Removed from the bill was the grandfather clause for existing clubs. Also removed was a provision that would have prohibited the sale or consumption of alcohol at a sexually oriented business.
Late last month Jefferson County Commissioners enacted a moratorium on conditional use permits after an adult business owner from Douglas county applied for a permit to operate a strip club just outside of Meriden on K-4 Highway.
On Tuesday night the Planning and Zoning Commission was to meet to begin discussions about addressing the county’s regulations.
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