BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A bill that would ban teens younger than 16 from using tanning beds is back in the Idaho Legislature, one year after similar legislation died in the Senate amid outcry of government intrusion from the tanning industry.
The House Health and Welfare committee on Monday introduced a measure intended to keep minors under 16 out of tanning booths and require in-person parental consent for 16 and 17-year-olds. Under the bill, violators would be charged with a misdemeanor and fined up to $100, while second offenders could be hit with a $300 fine.
Ken McClure, the lobbyist for the Idaho Medical Association, says tanning poses a serious health concern to young people and heightens risk for skin cancer. In his testimony, McClure said new studies show repeated use of tanning beds continue to show a strong correlation with melanoma.
"(We've) made a decision that (kids) should not be able to buy or use tobacco at all," he said. "This is another thing we think as guardians of the public health that you should look at very seriously."
This year's version mirrors last year's bill, which barred anyone under 15 from tanning and required parental consent for older teens.