L.A. NOW

Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Legal fight expected over ballot measure on porn actor condom use

December 29, 2011 |  8:34 am

Initiative requiring condom use in porn filming qualifies for ballot

A legal battle is expected play out before Los Angeles voters consider a ballot measure that would require porn actors to wear condoms while filming.

City officials said this week that the ballot measure got enough signatures to qualify for the June ballot.

But L.A. City Atty. Carmen Trutanich filed court papers earlier this month saying that Los Angeles voters would have no legal authority to adopt the proposed measure.

Trutanich argued that only the state could legally impose rules requiring the use of condoms on porn sets and charging fees to pay for inspections.

Trutanich's said a voter-approved condom requirement could attract a lawsuit, forcing "the needless and wasteful expenditure of public resources made in connection with a measure which the voters have no power to adopt."

"What we're trying to do is seek judicial clarification to see if the city of Los Angeles is preempted from regulating condoms in adult film shoots or whether those powers are relegated to other state agencies," said Frank Mateljan, spokesman for Trutanich, an in interview earlier this month.

The city attorney’s opinion is at odds, however, with that of the head of the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health, which regulates workplace safety.

In a Friday email to one of Trutanich’s deputy city attorneys, Cal/OSHA chief Ellen Widess wrote that she believes the city could legally enact the restrictions envisioned in the proposed ballot measure.

“We don’t see a bar to the city or the county doing what they need to do,” Widess said in a telephone interview Monday evening. “We believe the city can use its authority to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS among people involved in the adult film industry.”

Ged Kenslea, a spokesman for AIDS Healthcare Foundation, the ballot measure’s main backer, said proponents gathered more than 70,000 signatures, well beyond the 41,000 required to place it on the ballot.

“We’re thrilled we’ve passed this initial threshold,” Kenslea said. “We believe we’re going to prevail in court and look forward to taking this issue directly to the voters.”

RELATED:

Porn industry blasts condom campaign

Forcing porn actors to wear condoms sparks legal battle

Porn filmmaking shut down after performer tests HIV positive

-- Scott Glover and Rong-Gong Lin II

Photo: Michael Weinstein of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation demonstrates at a Cal/OSHA meeting in Orange County last year for condom use in porn filming. Credit: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

Comments 

Advertisement










Video