Updates to ordinance consideredFirst reading of adult entertainment revisions to be Tuesday
At the Washington City Council special meeting Tuesday evening the adult entertainment ordinance was discusses.
City administrator Brent Hinson said he saw a loophole in the ordinance and thought it needed to be updated. The current ordinance doesn’t restrict where adult entertainment businesses could set up shop in the city, which includes next to a church or school, or even around the square downtown.
“There’s nothing specific that is bringing this up at the current time and that’s probably for the best,” Hinson said. “It’s a lot better when there’s not a current issue.”
The proposed ordinance keeps adult entertainment shops out of the main thoroughfares in town and out of residential areas, Hinson said.
“Essentially, it’s just only in industrial areas that it’s allowed,” he said.
Councilor Kathy Salazar asked where Hinson got the language for the ordinance. Hinson said he researched other cities with an adult entertainment ordinance. Hinson also said City Attorney Kevin Olson had already looked over the proposed ordinance and thought the language was written well.
Councilor Robert Shellmyer asked why the ordinance had written into it that the building of the adult entertainment store could only be painted one color.
“It’s designed to—that anything like that is not going to be eye-catching,” Hinson said. “It’s to prevent it from being an eye catcher.”
Also, included in the ordinance is an age limit. People under the age of 18 years old would not be allowed in the establishment.
Mayor Sandra Johnson asked why male genitalia were specifically listed with exposure and not female genitalia.
“Why do we have to specifically have that in the code?” Johnson asked. “It’s covered under the broader term.”
“The problem is it’s not covered,” Shellmyer said.
Shepherd said it’s because you could cover that, but it would still be extremely explicit.
“Well, if Mr. Olson thinks it’s necessary,” Johnson said.
“Mr. Olson reviewed this and felt it was necessary,” Hinson said.
“OK,” Johnson said.
Hinson said this issue may never come up in Washington, but having an ordinance like this would prevent the firestorm that would happen if they didn’t have it.
Johnson asked councilor Kathy Salazar if the language of the ordinance read well to her as a lawyer. Salazar said the language was pretty standard and everything looked fine.
The first reading of the adult entertainment ordinance will be held at the next city council meeting on July 1.