More Neighbors Squawk As Porn Attempts to Extend Boundaries Beyond The Valley

from www.simivalleyacorn.com – Some homeowners in the unincorporated portion of Newbury Park are up in arms over an adult film shoot in their neighborhood, and they’re asking the county to step in with better regulations to prohibit or discourage filming.

In March, Art Monkeys Inc. began shooting a Web production titled “Playboy Plus” inside a home on Kathleen Drive, according to a film permit issued by the County of Ventura Planning Division. Filming is expected to continue on and off, about once every two weeks, through May 17.

Residents caught wind of the production last month when Sharon Feuer, an agent for Blockbuster Locations, distributed fliers in Newbury Park requesting furnished homes outside Los Angeles County for adult-rated filming.

“Prefer new homes ideally that are private and at least 2,300 square feet and larger,” it said. “A house with natural light and a private yard is also a big plus.”

According to Feuer, rental fees are negotiable and dependent on the length and scope of the shoot. Homeowners can make as much as $2,000 a day.

In November, voters in Los Angeles County passed Measure B, a law that requires adult film actors to wear condoms while shooting sex scenes, and since then some companies that make the X-rated movies have decided to take their production crews elsewhere, Feuer told the Acorn.

“The whole industry has been affected,” she said. “Some people have been going to Las Vegas. I’m looking in the whole of Ventura County, Orange County and other counties.”

The location agent said she hasn’t received any direct complaints from neighbors in Newbury Park.

“I hope this doesn’t get blown out of proportion,” she said. “(The cast and crew) try to be extremely discreet.”

Feuer said productions with pornographic content have less impact on neighbors than mainstream productions.

For instance, most permits require that activity cannot be visible or audible to the general public.

“(Adult film productions) are more low-key,” she said. “They usually have smaller crews, handheld equipment and just a little bit of lighting.”

Tricia Maier, a manager with the county’s planning division, which issues permits to people filming in unincorporated areas, said there is nothing illegal about shooting an adult film in the county as long as it goes through the appropriate channels.

Asked how many permit requests her office has received for adult films since the start of the year, Maier said the county has no way of tracking which requests are for X-rated projects.

“Before issuing a permit, we review whether or not the film activities (comply with) the regulations in our zoning ordinance,” she said. “If a film permit (application) comes in and says it’s for interior and exterior dialogue and walking and talking, we wouldn’t have the faintest idea of whether it’s for adult filming or not.”

Thousand Oaks has an application process similar to the county’s.

Geoff Ware, the code compliance manager for the City of T.O., said he isn’t aware of the city’s receiving any permit requests for pornographic films. No film titles have suggested adult content.

“To our knowledge, we haven’t issued any permits for adult films in (at least) the last year,” he said.

Ware said all commercial filming projects within city limits must be approved by surrounding neighbors—a stipulation determined by the project’s timeline.

Film shoots of up to three days require the approval of 90 percent of neighbors within a 200-foot radius of the production. Film shoots of four or more days require the approval of at least 95 percent of neighbors within a 300-foot radius of the production.

To express their displeasure with the filming on Kathleen Drive as well as with another shoot inside a home on Topa View Terrace—also in unincorporated Newbury Park—some homeowners have contacted Ventura County Supervisor Linda Parks.

Parks told the Acorn on Friday that she’s asked the Board of Supervisors to examine the issue of the adult-film industry coming into Ventura County.

“These are neighborhoods with children and young families,” Parks said. “The county needs to put up some roadblocks because we don’t want to see the porn industry moving out here.”

Two county cities have already taken preliminary measures to discourage adult filming.

Last April, the Simi Valley City Council approved an ordinance mirroring L.A. County’s law that requires pornographic film performers to wear condoms during sex acts. And just last Wednesday, the Camarillo City Council passed a 45-day moratorium on the production of all adult-rated films after the city received several filming requests.

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