A bill by outgoing California State Senator Jack Scott, (D-Altadena) will ban Mylar or foil balloons and impose fines on those who sell them. He claims that the balloons are responsible for power outages, but has been unable to show documentation for his claims or the wild dollar amounts thrown around. The bill is pending in the State Senate.
Radio talk show host John & Ken are starting a protest to defeat the bill.
The sale of these balloons are worth about $100 million annually. Los Angeles, being an Industry Town, would also account for a lot of the creative energy (myself included) put into Sponge Bob, Mickey, Bugs and other unique creations.
Some hospitals only allow the foil balloons because of latex allergy problems. I remember because after a balloon product review at Disney one day, my gal pal Marta and I decided to take all the leftover balloons from the meeting down the block to St. Joe's Hospital. Somehow we stuffed all of them into our cars and made it down the block without getting pulled over by the police.
We were going to send them up to the Children's Unit or to the nurses at ICU to pass around. We got halfway into the lobby and were stopped in our tracks with our billowing bouquets of contraband. A nurse, a security guard and some other random medical-looking person emerged from the woodwork and pounced on us! "Stop! Where do you think you're going with those things?!"
We were only allowed to leave the Mylar balloons for the kids. We were shooed out of the lobby to the street outside with our latex rejects. Luckily there were a few people going home who were not allergic, and happy to take them off our hands.
Anyway, if balloons on power lines are such a great threat (which we suspect they're not), there has been no discussion in the State Capitol about why a small piece of foil is such a terrorist threat to the State Energy Supply, and what should be done about it.
I am not sure what the utilities spend protecting and upgrading infrastructure to include shielding each year, but I doubt it equals their advertising budget, which they use to advertise about what great infrastructure they have and how you should support rate increases.
California is the only state that already requires that balloons are sold with a weight and a note warning about balloons getting caught in power lines.
Join John and Ken for their protest June 11 at Memorial Park in Pasadena.
Live radio broadcast starts at 3:00 p.m. Bring the kids!