A invoice defending viewpoints of probably controversial rock bands and different acts had its Senate debut, and the response from the Commerce and Tourism committee factors to an encore.

Republican Sen. Jonathan Martin’s evocatively named “Proper to Rock Act” (SB 1206) holds that an “proprietor or operator of a public venue could not cancel a reside efficiency of an artist, a performer, or a musical group due to the artist’s, performer’s, or musical group’s lawful train of freedom of speech or the artist’s, performer’s, or musical group members’ private beliefs.”

These protections don’t apply “to an proprietor or operator who cancels a reside efficiency primarily based on an affordable perception that the efficiency would violate any relevant state legislation or rule,” Martin added in introduction.

Public venues might be “owned by or rented to a governmental entity, college, faculty, or college,” per the invoice, if these are “funded by or constructed with public or authorities funds.” The invoice doesn’t apply to personal venues, which may “discriminate nonetheless they need to primarily based on speech,” Martin famous.

The sponsor believes that if “public {dollars}” are spent on amenities, they need to respect the free expression of artists.

One Democrat greeted the measure with skepticism, with Sen. Vic Torres asking why the committee is “doing this invoice.”

Martin mentioned some “reside performers” imagine they had been canceled due to exercising their free speech rights.

Torres was a “no” vote on the invoice, which superior regardless of his objection.

Martin’s invoice is the Senate model of 1 filed within the Home by Republican Rep. Joel Rudman, whose model has not been heard in any committee but. Its first cease, ought to it ever be heard, could be the Regulatory Reform & Economic Development Subcommittee, which didn’t embody it on its Feb. 6 agenda.

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