New restrictions coming for Hollywood tour bus companies

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Driving around Hollywood, it feels like there's tour buses everywhere you look. If you live here, it comes with the territory. But, a group of Hollywood Hills residents, with backing from the governor, say it's gone too far.

"The problem is that they're not obeying the laws: the traffic laws, general ethics rules. They're not telling the truth to the tourists. They're running stop signs. They're blocking traffic," said resident Anastasia Mann.

Mann has lived in the Hollywood Hills for over 30 years, but says in the past four years, tour operators have allowed their drivers to do whatever they want. She says they're after higher tips and even lie about where celebrities live. Mann worked with her assemblyman to pass the modified tour buses act, which was signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown Wednesday.

"This industry has mushroomed severely and so the aggregate growth of the business and the aggressiveness of the competition has forced some of these businesses to take up practices that's spilled over into the community," said Assemblyman Adrin Nazarian (D-Sherman Oaks), who represents District 46.

The bill strengthens the ability for cities like Los Angeles to restrict certain routes for the tour companies. It also forces them to use headphones instead of loudspeakers on open-air buses. One of the largest operators, StarLine Tours, says they plan to follow the new rules and are already using headphones.

"If it's law then it's law, and we will obey the law, naturally. We believe that we should be good neighbors with people," said Kami Farhadi, the chairman of StarLine Tours.

Residents like Anastasia Mann say she fully understands tourism is big business in Los Angeles, but doesn't want it to impact her quality of life.

"We want good tourism," Mann said. "We want our tourists to be treated properly and to be happy. And to carry the right message back home about Hollywood."

The bill goes into effect in January, and then it will be up to individual cities to enforce the restrictions.
Copyright © 2021 KABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.