Kirsten Kolpitcke with the League of California Cities says prostitution at massage parlors has skyrocketed since a non-profit organization started running a voluntary certification program in 2009. She says that’s no surprise given who is on its board.
“The majority of which are either people who own a massage establishment or who represent an association of a massage organization,” says Kolpitcke.
Cities and counties oversaw massage parlors through zoning and other local codes before the California Massage Therapy Council took over the voluntary certification program in 2009. The voluntary program is scheduled to sunset in 2015. Critics say local control should then return and the state should take over certification.
Assemblymember Jimmy Gomez says the program allowing the massage parlor industry to police itself has failed and should be allowed to sunset as scheduled next year.
“There is an overwhelming need to figure out how to control the over-proliferation of illicit massage parlors through the entire state of California,” Gomez says.
The Massage Therapy Council, the organization that certifies massage therapists, says it would like to see the current program retained, but with better coordination with local agencies.
The California Legislature is expected to adjourn its two-year session just past midnight Friday. It's an early end to what has so far been a surprisingly calm final week.
California's Senate passed a bill that would require public institutions of higher education to adopt procedures to prevent campus sexual assault and domestic violence, and to assist victims.
A bill that would require toy guns to be painted with markings to show they are fake has passed the state legislature.
The California Legislature’s “gut-and-amend” process is highly criticized, but lawmakers defend it as necessary.
Sources tell Capital Public Radio that a deal has been reached for legislation that would tighten regulations for ride-sharing companies.