A new version of a bill to address and restrict certain materials in public libraries and public schools will be heard Thursday morning in the House State Affairs Committee.
A concept that has come to be known as the “Library Bill” first emerged this session as House Bill 139. That bill was killed in early March.
Sponsors of the legislation, Senator Cindy Carlson (R-District 7) and Representative Jaron Crane (R-District 12) reworked the language after what Crane called, “a few friendly negotiations.” Assisting in the drafting was President of the Idaho Family Policy Center, Blaine Conzatti.
The new draft was printed on Tuesday as House Bill 314. The statement of purpose reads,
“The Children’s School and Library Protection Act requires public schools and community libraries to take reasonable steps in restricting children’s access to obscene or harmful material. A parent or guardian of a minor child who accesses such material in violation of this policy would be entitled to bring a civil action against the school or library for damages and injunctive relief.”
There has been much controversy over what are, and what are not, appropriate materials for children to have access to. Proponents of this legislation have argued that restricting access on certain topics is essential to protecting children from harm. Opponents have called it destruction of free speech.
Those wanting to testify for or against this legislation can do so Thursday in the House State Affairs Committee hearing room, EW40, beginning at 8am. There is also an option to testify remotely using this portal: https://legislature.idaho.gov/sessioninfo/2023/standingcommittees/hsta/#hcode-tab-style2testimony-registration-remote-in-person
Tags: 2023 Idaho Legislature, 2023 Legislative Session, Blaine Conzatti, Cindy Carlson, House Bill 139, House Bill 314, Idaho Family Policy Center, Jaron Crane, Library Bill