Calif. Appropriations Panel to Hear AB 1576 on Wednesday

Rhett Pardon

SACRAMENTO — Assembly Bill 1576, the proposal that would mandate condom use in all porn productions shot in California, continues to wend its way through the state's Legislature.

Next stop: The state's Assembly's Appropriation Committee, which is tasked to allocate annual funds to state government agencies.

On Wednesday, the panel will hear discussion on the bill, as well as its newly made amendments to it, from its sponsor, Assemblyman Isadore Hall. The committee also will take a vote on it, and possibly move it along.

The adult industry, of course, will make its presence be known at the state Capitol.

"There will be a group representing the industry in Sacramento," the Free Speech Coalition's Joanne Cachapero told XBIZ on Friday.

At the last hearing, facing legislators in the Assembly Arts & Entertainment Committee, the adult industry was well-represented, with Free Speech Coalition's Diane Duke, founder Peter Acworth, attorney Marc Randazza, performer Kayden Kross and others making statements advocating against the proposal.

The bill, however, advanced on a 4-1 vote, setting up a move to next week's Appropriation Committee hearing.

Yesterday, the AB 1576's sponsor, Hall, made amendments to the piece of legislation.

Most significantly, the amended bill includes language stating that workers consent to disclosing to the state that he or she was the subject of an HIV test. Also, the phrase "injury prevention program" throughout the bill was replaced with "exposure control plan"

The Appropriations Committee is chaired by Assemblyman Mike Gatto, who was accused last year by AIDS Healthcare Foundation's Michael Weinstein of "single-handedly blocking" AB 640, a previous porn-condom bill that died in the Legislature. In August, Weinstein called him "pornographers' best friend in Sacramento" at a press conference over the measure.

At the time, the AHF's president even created a robo-call campaign against Gatto. The pre-recorded calls, reportedly to 100,000 constituents, urged them to ask Gatto to "free AB 640 from his hold."

AB 1576 will be heard at the state Capitol, Room 4202 on Wednesday at 9 a.m. It is the third item slated in front of 17 potential committee members.

View AB 1576 (amended)