Los Angeles Sees Sharp Falloff In Porn Production Permit Requests

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The organization that handles permits for adult film shoots, Film LA, has only received two applications this year, according to the Los Angeles Daily News, prompting some to wonder whether the porn industry has abandoned LA. (photo credit: Shutterstock) | Shutterstock

Has the porn industry abandoned Los Angeles?

It seems that way, if you consider that the organization that handles permits for movie shoots has only had two requests for adult films this year, according to the Los Angeles Daily News. Compare that to the roughly 500 permit requests that the organization told the news outlet it usually receives every year, and you get an idea of how dramatic the falloff in adult film production has been in Los Angeles.

(The Huffington Post confirmed the number of requests with Paul Audley, president of Film LA, which handles all permits.)

But why are adult filmmakers leaving the City of Angels?

It's tough to say, but some think it's because of a recent law, known as Measure B, that mandates men wear condoms during porn filming anywhere in Los Angeles County.

"Measure B in and of itself is just unworkable for the adult entertainment industry," Diane Duke, the CEO of Free Speech Coalition, a trade organization for the adult entertainment industry, told HuffPost on Monday. "So adult film producers are just choosing to shoot outside of Los Angeles County."

When Measure B was passed by voters in November, largely to prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), adult film producers threatened to abandon the city for places with less restrictive laws.

"It will be interesting to see what happens next," porn star James Deen told HuffPost when the law was passed. "People will most likely move production out of Los Angeles and take out tax money with us."

The law, which is also known as the Safer Sex Initiative, also burdens porn producers by requiring them to pay for a permit to film and to submit to inspections by the LA Department of Public Health. Violators would be given fines and criminal misdemeanor charges.

But some of the law's supporters, such as Michael Weinstein, the executive director of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, the primary proponent of Measure B, say it's needed for public health reasons. Weinstein spent more than $1.6 million to get the measure passed, the San Bernardino County Sun reported in November.

Indeed, STD rates among porn actors in Los Angeles are high, according to a 2010 study by experts working with the LA Department of Public Health, the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and the University of California in Los Angeles. That study found that porn actors in LA have higher rates of STDs than legal prostitutes in Nevada.

If porn production has left LA because of the restrictive condom law, it may leave California altogether if a similar law, Assembly Bill 332, passes the state legislature. Opponents of the law, which was introduced in February, say the law is bad for business and is unnecessary because the adult film industry already has measures in place to test for STDs.

(h/t Reason)

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