A bill that would require parental consent for the use of a tanning bed by anyone under 17 has caused House Republicans’ tempers to flare at one another.

The legislation, HB 1411, would require a parent to annually give consent for a child under 17 to use tanning beds. Supporters say the bill would ensure that parents consider the risks of skin cancer children could be exposed to by tanning.

Some Republicans say the bill grows government and interferes needlessly with small businesses who have tanning beds.

Representative Denny Hoskins (R-Warrensburg) says tanning facilities don’t need to be regulated like those that offer ear piercings or tattoos.

“A piercing and a tattoo are permanent,” says Hoskins.  “It will be on your body forever. I find it hard to argue that going to a tanning solon once would be that.”

Hoskins introduced an amendment that would have nullified the legislation.

The comments and his amendment angered fellow Republican, John McCaherty (High Ridge).  “Get your science straight,” he told Hoskins. “Piercings are not permanent. You can get your ears pierced, the will grow back. Death … death is permanent. Cancer can be permanent.”

Hoskins’ amendment was defeated and the bill was given initial approval. It needs another favorable vote to go to the Senate.