California bill seeking to end orca shows at SeaWorld stalls; panel says further study needed

The Associated Press

FILE - This Feb. 14, 2013 file photo provided by SeaWorld San Diego shows mother killer whale Katsaka and her calf swimming together at SeaWorld San Diego's Shamu Stadium in San Diego. A California bill that sought to end killer whale shows at SeaWorld in San Diego and phase out their captivity was put on hold Tuesday, April 8, 2014, dousing an escalating fight between animal activists and supporters of the major tourist attraction. The bill's author, Democrat Richard Bloom of Santa Monica, agreed during the bill's first hearing before the water, parks and wildlife committee to revisit his proposal after further study. (AP Photo/SeaWorld San Diego, Mike Aguilera, File)

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"Nobody likes to wait, but I've been doing this for over 20 years," she told reporters after the hearing. "I'm playing the long game."

New York lawmakers have also been considering a bill to ban the captivity of killer whales, although there are none in the state. Rose said she had been working with lawmakers in Texas and Florida, where SeaWorld has parks in San Antonio and Orlando, to introduce similar legislation.

The bill tested incoming Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins, who has not taken a stance but said in a statement that she supported the interim study. The divisive bill placed the Democrat from San Diego in an awkward position as she had to balance pressure from the party's environmental base and one of the largest employers in her district.

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