July 29, 2008
There will be a crack down on adult businesses in Saipan. At least on their appearances. The Saipan Tribune reports that CNMI zoning officials are cracking down on signage and building design of adult establishments:
At issue in the pending enforcement effort is a zoning law passed six months ago that establishes, among other rules, criteria for the signs outside adult businesses. The law, slated to take effect Aug. 1, requires that adult business signs not display any sexually explicit language or graphics. In addition, the new law bars adult businesses from advertising with neon signs and signs lit from underneath, and requires that parking areas have sufficient lighting. It also carries restrictions on the noise level of an establishment, prohibiting the use of loudspeakers.How about a crack down of what happens behind the closed doors, not just a crack down on what appears outside the "adult" establishments? Human trafficking, forced prostitution, sexual abuse of underage minors, and false imprisonment that has occurred in such establishments has earned the CNMI much well-deserved bad publicity. I see prostitutes on the streets and scantily clad young women (girls?) standing outside adult establishments trying to lure customers inside every time I come to Saipan.
Most adult businesses on Saipan, Tilley said, are not complying with the new law now and could face daily $1,000 fines or possible criminal penalties for failing to conform to its standards...
...Meanwhile, the board has received only one proposal regarding the second aspect of the newly proposed adult business zoning rules, the creation of an “adult business park.” Officials with the Department of Commerce have suggested the now defunct La Fiesta Mall, a sprawling empty retail site, could serve as an ideal location for such a park because its design will help government regulators and police enforce local laws there.
The idea of proposing a sex mall referred to as an "adult business park" is disgusting. Is this how the CNMI wants to attract tourists? What's the promotion going to read? - "Come to Saipan, the only US city with a population of under 80,000 and a sex mall with 40 sleazy venues to meet all of your decadent adult desires. Drop the wife and children at the Duty Free stores or the beach and enjoy your time at Saipan's sex mall." Furthermore, will the federal guest worker program allow the import of nonresident workers to fill such unessential and controversial positions as strippers, waitresses, exotic dancers and the like? Maybe the businesses will close when the only workers that can be recruited for these positions will be residents.
Why not turn the La Fiesta into a cultural center with museum-type displays, galleries to display crafts and visual art, restaurants with ethnic foods, and performing art shows that highlight all of the diverse cultures of the CNMI?
See this post for more views on the proposed sex park.