Rampant Licensing Requirements Are Tricks, Not Treats
Today, Matt Drudge linked to two articles that illustrate the negative consequences of excessive licensing requirements. The city of Ventura, Calif., has condemned a homemade haunted house on private property as an “unsafe structure,” and prohibits visitors from entering it.
Responding to an anonymous complaint, the city said the 1,200-square-foot “amusement building” didn’t have a permit.
As a consequence, the cavorters will have to limit their fun to that which the city will allow.
There will be no maze, and it will only be open Halloween night, to coincide with a block party the neighbors are hoping to have, with the city’s permission.
This story has a lot of similarities to a story I blogged about recently in which a Michigan woman was cited for running an unlicensed daycare center. In both situations, no one had been physically hurt, all involved parties were happy with the arrangement, no money had been exchanged, and it occurred on private property.
This demonstrates how red tape can negatively affect the general welfare. For many families, visiting this haunted house is a Halloween tradition. The unintended consequence of requiring vigilante haunted houses to obtain a permit is disappointed children. Parents should have the right to determine what constitutes a safe environment for their children.
As contributors to this blog have discussed, Missouri is a milieu for rampant licensing laws, too.