The District of Columbia government made the first move yesterday toward a coordinated enforcement of laws and regulations against sexually oriented businesses that have proliferated and become more explicit in their operations throughout the city.

At a 90-minute meeting, Mayor Walter E. Washington told department heads to inventory the various health, fire, police, zoning, building, licensing and other codes that could be brought to bear against businesses that exploit sex.

The officials were told to report their potential legal weapons to city administrator Julian Dugas, who will draft recommendations to the mayor.

Sam Eastman, the mayor's press spokesman, said yesterday's session stopped short of reaching any decisions, partly because many of the sexually oriented businesses - such as adult bookstores - enjoy legal protection under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

The mayor assembled yesterday's meeting after a flurry of activity by city agencies on the pornography issue last week.

On Friday, the D.C. Zoning Commission adopted strong, permanent rules limiting new sexually oriented businesses to the downtown area and virtually prohibitting their further proliferation.

That same day, Police Chief Maurice Cullinane led other officials - including Dugas and U.S. Attorney Earl Silbert - on an unannounced tour of downtown sex shops.

Ben W. Gilbert, director of municipal planning, said the timing of the two actions was coincidental, leading the mayor to call for an exploration of future steps that might be taken on a coordinated basis.

"We want to make sure that these laws are obeyed and to look at the situation to see if anything else is needed" in the way of new laws, Gilbert said. "This thing has reached a point where it has become a problem that needs the attention of the mayor."

Gilbert said community objections to sexually oriented businesses are increasing, both as the businesses move into new parts of the city and as their activities become more explicit.

"They've gone from skimpy costumes to nothing above the waist, to complete nudity and explicit portrayal coming from the Shepherd Park area Gilbert said the latest protests are coming from the Shepherd ark area north of Walter Reed Army Hospital. He said sex shops have sprouted up along Georgia Avenue, the neighborhood's main commercial artery.

Neither Gilbert nor Corporation Counsel John R. Risher Jr., the city's chief legal officer, would speculate on the next enforcement steps that might be taken.

Eastman, speaking in what he called hypothetical terms, said health officials could ascertain that ventilation, sanitary facilities and food services meet all requirements in affected businesses. Fire officials could check safety measures. Liquor licensing officials could be sure that bars are not violating laws or rules of conduct.

Among those at yesterday's meeting, in addition to Gilbert, Eastman, Dugas, Risher and Cullinane, were Jerfferson W. Lewis, acting fire chief; Herbert L. Tucker, director of environmental services; Bailus Walker Jr., administrator of environmental health; James W. Hill, director of economic development (whose department includes city licensing activities, including liquor control), and Lorenoz Jacobs, director of housing and community development.