From the Beckley Register-Herald:
Here in West Virginia, productive individuals and small businesses are taxed to death, the economy is awful, the business environment is awful, and we have one of the largest state governments per capita in the country. There are so many important reforms that could be implemented by the state legislature to improve the situation. However, the West Virginia Senate apparently has more important priorities. If the legislature wants to change negative behavior and actually have a positive impact on our state, I have an idea: enforce the speed limits in our rural towns and counties, where innocent people are killed and maimed everyday due to reckless and negligent drivers. That, or the economy is something worth worrying about. – John H. Bryan, West Virginia criminal defense attorney.
‘Can’t touch this’
Senator wants to ban lap dances
CHARLESTON — Lap dancing would be a no-no in West Virginia strip clubs in a new bill authored by Senate Majority Whip Billy Wayne Bailey.
And such clubs must stop the music and the nude dancing at the midnight hour, six hours earlier than existing law allows, if the bill is enacted.
Known as the West Virginia Community Defense Act, it was offered by Bailey at the request of the West Virginia Values Coalition.
“It curbs the secondary effects of sexually oriented businesses,” Bailey said Wednesday.
“And it stops the actual entertainment at midnight. No more dancing from midnight to 6 a.m. By midnight, the girls have to stop working.”
What’s more, it sets a 6-foot buffer zone between the strip teasers and the patrons.
“No touching allowed,” the senator said. “No lap dancing.”
Bailey said real estate that surrounds such exotic dancing establishments has tended to suffer in value.
“It’s just dead,” he said. “The price goes down. It’s just bad for the community. You have crime going up after midnight around those places.”
Another intent is to offer a measure of protection to the dancers, he said.
“Girls have uninvited advances made to them and things of that nature,” he said. “This would offer protection for participants on both sides of the situation.”
In a statement, the Values Coalition said Bailey’s bill intends to provide West Virginia families with “limited protection from the ancillary effects that sexually oriented businesses impose on the surrounding community.”
“Studies show that sexually oriented businesses are breeding grounds for forced prostitution, sexual assault, illicit drug use, drug trafficking, sex trafficking, property crimes, blight, burglary, litter and the spread of disease,” the Charleston-based group said.
“By regulating the peak hours for the commission of these secondary effects and creating personal buffer zones, the secondary effects to the community by sexually oriented businesses are greatly diminished.”