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Ray Haynes

Mr. Haynes is an Assembly member representing Riverside and Temecula. He serves on the Appropriations and Budget Committees. [go to Assembly Member Haynes website at California Assembly][go to Haynes index]

The 2004 Nosey Awards
Government running our lives…

[Ray Haynes] 10/19/04

The more the government gets involved in regulating every aspect of our private and professional lives, the further it gets from being able to successfully fulfill the basic responsibilities that we need government for in the first place. If we spent more time in the Legislature working on our state’s infrastructure and public safety, and less time poking our noses into everyone’s business, our state would be a lot better off.

The 2004 Nosey Award Winner is:

1. SB 1520 Foie Gras – Symbolizing the pinnacle of pointless proposals, it deals with a food item that few can pronounce, few can afford, and even fewer actually eat. It regulates the methods used to feed the ducks that are used to produce the foie gras that feeds people--regulating how our dinner eats its dinner! Only one foie gras farm even exists in the state, and this legislation won’t take effect until he retires! Who says the legislature “ducks” all the tough issues?

Runners Up

2. ACR 144 Feng Shui – Another heroic effort by the legislature to tackle a topic nobody can pronounce. This bill would have integrated “feng shui” principles into the state building code. Only a half-step shy of burning incense and placing Buddhas by the front door for good luck, the state has no business burdening our state’s builders with Eastern Mysticists writing our design standards.

3. AB 1857 Exotic Cat Declawing – Have we learned nothing from Siegfried and Roy? I admit I don’t see the need to own lions, tigers, ocelots or any other cat, much less an exotic one, but if I did, or my neighbor did, I’d feel better about it if they were declawed. This bill would prohibit the declawing of wild and exotic pet cats. Why? It’s not like they need them to protect themselves against predator raccoons or neighbor children, and I’m pretty sure they don’t need them to capture and eat water buffalo or zebra in the backyard.

4. AB 2193 Tanning Facilities – Originally this bill would have prohibited anyone under the age of 18 from using a tanning facility, but will now prohibit those under 14 from using a tanning bed, and will continue to require parental consent forms for those between the ages of 14 and 18 who wish to use a tanning facility. Of course, 12-,13-,14-, 15-, 16-, and 17-year olds will continue to be able to have abortions without parental consent, but I guess that’s not as big a threat to society and children’s health as a fake-bake is.

5. SB 1555 Maternity Services – Had it not been vetoed by the Governor, this bill would have required that no matter how old, single, or male you are, all health insurance policies would have to cover maternity services. Of course, maternity services are currently available as an option, but this bill would have required all of us to purchase it—driving up insurance costs even higher. I’ve got one question for the author, Senator Speier: Does the phrase “my body, my choice” mean anything to you?

6. SB 74 Vending Machines – This bill would authorize state agencies to survey employees in state buildings that have vending machines to determine if they want healthier food in them. If vendors think they will make more money by selling healthier snacks, they’ll be happy to supply them, and it’s their job to do the marketing research to figure that out.

7. AB 1723 Rest Periods – Would have allowed employers to be sued if they do not ensure that every employee takes every meal and rest period required under the law. So if an employee wanted to work through lunch to finish up a contract, the boss would have to drag them kicking and screaming out of their cubicle and into a lunch room posted with armed guards, so that they didn’t sneak back to their desk to accomplish something when they’re supposed to be eating their peanut butter and foie gras sandwich.

8. SB 1226 State Grass – Again showing the need to have a role or a say in everything in life, the omniscient, omnipresent state legislature has decided that purple needlegrass (Nasella pulchra) should be our official “state grass”. Declaring this glorified weed our state grass really proves again how far out of touch our legislature is with the broader California grass-consuming culture…

9. SB 1893 Second-hand Dealers – “Have a garage sale, go to jail.” This bill would have expanded the list of “secondhand dealers” and required a host of new and higher fees to be paid by antique dealers, pawnbrokers, coin dealers, etc. Would also require a state-run electronic reporting system where every item obtained by a secondhand dealer for sale would have to be logged, along with a complete description and the fingerprints of the provider of the item. Needless to say, E-Bay hates it. Expensive, burdensome, pointless and nosey.

10. SB 1056 Super-Centers – This bill would have required an “economic impact report” to determine the effect a large, new store will have on existing stores and employment before it can be approved. Can you imagine government preventing any business from opening until it promises it won’t out-compete or out-produce the existing stores or factories? That it would only be permitted to operate if it promised not to take sales or employees from anyone else? A bad idea for business, and a bad idea for consumers. CRO


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