TOPEKA — In a vote that could foreshadow campaign postcards of 2012, state senators Wednesday almost certainly killed a bill designed to drive sexually oriented businesses out of business.
By a vote of 22-17, the senators opted not to pull the Community Defense Act out of a committee that had voted down an identical measure earlier this year.
Among its major provisions, the bill would:
Prevent new sexually oriented businesses from locating within 1,000 feet property line to property line of any home, school, church, park, library or other adult business.
Prohibit nude or topless dancing and require a six-foot separation between performers and patrons.
Ban private video viewing booths.
Require operators to constantly monitor their customers.
Require adult-oriented businesses to be closed from midnight to 6 a.m.
Businesses affected would include strip clubs, adult bookstores and shops selling sex toys. Both sides acknowledge that it would be difficult to impossible for the businesses to operate under the proposed restrictions.
The House had put the language of the act into an old Senate bill, which forced the senators to take todays vote though even the measures most ardent supporters acknowledged it had little to no chance of passing.
Because Senate President Steve Morris had declared the bill materially altered from what the Senate originally passed, Sen. Steve Abrams, R-Arkansas City, needed 24 votes to bring the bill out of committee for a floor vote.
He said he was disappointed to fall seven votes short on the measure, which fell last year on a 20-20 Senate tie.
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