Calif. Legislative Panel Votes to Move AB 332 Forward

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — AB 332 moved forward today after a California legislative panel voted 5-1 in favor of the bill.

The bill, introduced in February by Assemblyman Isadore Hall from Compton, Calif., mirrors Measure B, which makes condoms mandatory for porn shoots in Los Angeles County.

Hall's proposal, denounced by adult entertainment trade group Free Speech Coalition and a majority of the industry, was heard this morning by the Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism and Internet Media legislative committee.

The hour-long hearing included testimony against the proposal from director Eli Cross, attorney Karen Tynan, performers Alana Evans and Lydia Lee and the FSC's Diane Duke.

"This bill will not change how we shoot; it will only will change where we shoot," Cross said. "Make no mistake: this bill is punitive in nature. This bill is designed to dismantle this industry. To add insult to injury, the bill was introduced without any input from the adult entertainment industry whatsoever."

Cross said that already the industry is moving productions out of Los Angeles County, where Measure B was passed by voters mandating barrier protection for performers.

"I'm personally shooting a film where the entire cast and crew are making roundtrips to Ventura and Mojave," Cross said. "Because we will not shoot in L.A. County. It is happening."

Cross went on to say that many studios are considering to bolt the Golden State permanently. He said that Vivid Entertainment is contemplating building a new soundstage in Nevada.

"Adult productions are shot all over the country, and there lots of states and communities that would welcome a $5-6 billion industry," Cross said.

"Hustler will move, Vivid will move and we are confident Manwin will move. Nobody is that married to California. A lot of our talent is decentralized; they can fly in and out where they need to."

"My livelihood will disappear if AB 332 is passed," Cross said.

The legislative committee is composed of seven state assembly members: Richard Bloom, the bill's co-author; Ian Calderon; Marie Waldron; Cheryl Brown; Jimmy Gomez; Marc Levine; and Scott Wilk, the only legislator who voted against AB 332 on Tuesday.

AB 332 now moves to the Labor and Employment Committee for further action.

"The bill does not have a hearing date yet, but should in the coming days," Hall press secretary Terry Schanz told XBIZ after the hearing. "Pending approval by the Labor Committee, the bill will be referred to the Assembly Appropriations Committee, then, pending its approval, will be voted on by the full Assembly.

"Pending approval by the full Assembly, the bill will be referred to the Senate and go through a similar policy and fiscal review process."