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Aug 24, 2013 4:06 PM by Tony Spehar

California vies for new space industry

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - California is racing other states to woo new private companies planning to take people on trips to space.

State legislators are debating a bill that will shield spaceship manufacturers and parts suppliers from lawsuits if someone gets killed or injured on a voyage.

The state enacted a law last year protecting space tourism companies like Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic.

Space industry advocates expect such private ventures to be lucrative investments.

Texas, Florida, Virginia, and New Mexico already have similar laws in attempts to lure the business.

Several lawmakers say the state should not relax its liability standards since tourists should expect space ships to be safe.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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