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California eyes new space industry

As several new private ventures to take people on trips to space come closer to reality, California lawmakers are racing other states to woo the new space companies with cushy incentives. They are debating a bill in Sacramento that would insulate manufacturers of spaceships and parts suppliers from liability should travelers get injured or killed on a voyage, except in cases such as gross negligence or intentional wrongdoing. Last year, the state enacted a law that shields space tourism companies such as Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic from similar lawsuits. “We’re still in the fledgling part of space flight and space travel, and we need people to be able to take a risk,” said California Republican Sen. Steve Knight, who introduced the state bills. Several other states — including Texas, Florida, Virginia, and New Mexico — have passed similar laws, hoping to lure newcomers to the more than $200 billion commercial space flight industry. Read More at the Toledo Blade.

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