BOWLING SHOE LEGISLATION IS ALL WET! With a crucial deadline to fix the state’s $12 billion budget deficit looming, Illinois Senators found time to vote and pass SB 1335 by a vote of 51-4. This important piece of legislation proclaims bowling shoes as “specialized footwear” and will help shield bowling alley owners from lawsuits that might result from bowlers who slip and fall because their bowling shoes got wet when they went outside and then came back into the bowling alley. This bill will allow bowling alleys to post signs throughout their building that bowling shoes should only be worn inside the alley. By having the warning signs, if a bowler goes outside and accumulate rain or snow on their bowling shoes it will not be the legal responsibility of the bowling alley owner if the bowler slips and falls inside the alley. The bill awaits Governor Quinn’s approval.
“It helps [owners] not to have to deal with negligent bowlers who go out to smoke or have wet feet and come in and sue them for something they’ve done that was not appropriate,” said Sen. Donne Trotter (D-Chicago). “This does away with negligent lawsuits.”
Why would a subject that seems so trivial come to the attention of state lawmakers at a time when our state is in a fiscal crisis? Easy answer! A lobbyist!
Cook County Democratic Chairman Joseph Berrios, a member of the Cook County Board of Review and father of state Rep. Maria Antonia Berrios (D-Chicago), was among those lobbying for the bill. Joseph Berrios represents the Illinois State Bowling Proprietors Association. How convenient for Father Berrios that his daughter is a member of the Illinois House.
So while I doubt that Father Barrios paid his daughter to influence her vote, he probably gave her a kiss and a hug in thanks. So we have a new category of influence to consider in Illinois politics—Kiss for Play! I can understand that because if George Clooney were lobbying me, I would do anything he asked me to in exchange for a kiss.