CITY HALL NEWS : CARSON : Adult Shops Get Reprieve From Ordinance

Raven A. Knight's adult business came close to being shut down, but after a series of meetings at City Hall, Knight Dreams can continue to sell massage oils, videos, lingerie and other novelties from a Carson mini-mall for at least five more years.

The City Council approved an ordinance at Tuesday's meeting that prohibits adult businesses from opening near schools, churches and residential areas. Knight Dreams was too close to homes, according to the ordinance. But officials, fearing a lawsuit, allowed Knight's business to continue operating for at least the five years remaining on his lease.

The Carson city clerk received more than 100 letters in support of Knight Dreams and the other adult business in Carson, Lingerie Dreams. Lingerie Dreams uses live models for lingerie.

At earlier council meetings, several people vehemently opposed allowing adult businesses. But City Atty. Glenn R. Watson said that an ordinance banning adult businesses would be unconstitutional.

Some residents suggested including a grandfather clause that would permit existing businesses to continue.

Instead, the new ordinance allows those two adult businesses to continue in their current locations for five years as existing legal nonconforming uses. Then those businesses will either have to ask for extensions or move to an area acceptable under the ordinance.

Knight said the council's decision is "a good compromise."

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