South Dakota Senate Panel Rejects Anti-Adult Bill for Language

PIERRE, S.D. - A South Dakota Senate committee has rejected a bill meant to restrict the operating procedures of adult businesses on grounds that its language is problematic, according to the Associated Press.

Sen. Arnie Hauge, R-Canistota, said the wording of the bill presents the potential for drawn-out court battles over definitions and other issues.

"I think it's a whole can of worms that is going to provide full employment for attorneys," Hauge said Monday.

Said Sen. Jason Grant, R-Sioux Falls, "Some of these definitions and some of these words, I'm not sure how that can be interpreted to make sure we're doing what we're trying to do."

The bill would have required sexually oriented businesses to obtain a county license and be inspected by the state Health Department. In addition, it would have prohibited porn shops from operating between midnight and 8 a.m.

Main bill sponsor Sen. Sandy Jerstad, D-Sioux Falls, said, "I think that's probably some of their best business, in the middle of the night, in the darkness."

Jerstad emphasized the importance of keeping adult businesses away from areas where children congregate. Sen. Dennis Schmidt, R-Rapid City, agreed: "It's tragic what it does to our communities. When this stuff gets on the streets, it's in the hands of kids. It's evil."