A tightened city law covering "adult entertainment" businesses in Benicia will be open to public comment Tuesday night.

The Benicia City Council will take its first crack at the adjusted law, which addresses the likes of strip clubs, adult book stores and other entertainment not for minors.

The fact that the law's update, which sets a number of restrictions on adult businesses, cannot just ban those businesses has riled residents in recent months.

Dozens of residents attended a recent city Planning Commission on the law. They urged the commission to throw out the restrictions and just say no to those businesses. City staff and commissioners explained that federal law prohibits banning the establishment of strip clubs and their like, but allows the city to set certain hoops for the business owners to jump through first.

The law attempts to mitigate "undesirable secondary effects" of adult businesses, according to a city staff report. Some hypothetical effects the city wants to avoid include increased crime, blight, reductions in property values and the spread of sexually transmitted diseases.

The public hearing, set for Tuesday's city council meeting at 7 p.m., comes more than a year and a half after the city set a moratorium on all new adult entertainment. Out-of-town business owner Robert Amatrone, who put out feelers on the city's adult entertainment laws in May 2007, was the council's impetus for updating its city codes....read more