To the People

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or TO THE PEOPLE.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

I Know You're Outraged. I'm Outraged Too


The state of Nevada is considering a tax on prostitution. The tax would apply per session with a prostitute. The Las Vegas Sun reports:
CARSON CITY – Sen. Bob Coffin, D-Las Vegas, proposed a tax on prostitution today that he says could raise $2 million a year for the state.

Patrons of prostitutes — both legal and illegal — would pay an extra $5 tax per session under the bill, which Coffin said was his idea alone.
How exactly the tax would be applied to illegal acts of prostitution, which in Nevada simply means off the books, is a bit of a mystery. That does not mean they will not try though:
Asked how the state could collect the tax from the independent street walkers, Coffin said that the business tax, when first imposed, wasn’t collected from all of those who were required to pay it.
Anyway, whose idea was this? Well, funny you should ask. It was the brothel owners' idea:
In the runup to the legislative session, a lobbyist for the state’s legal brothels volunteered to be taxed, an effort that some said would guarantee their continued survival. Assembly Speaker Barbara Buckley turned down the industry, effectively killing the effort.

“I think we will support it,” George Flint, a spokesman for the state’s brothel industry, said of Coffin’s bill.
Oh, and the state will be keeping and collecting lots of data on who pays, who charges, etc. and keeping it in a big ol' database:
Information received by the state Department of Taxation in collecting the proposed tax would be confidential, he said. The department could publish how much it took in, so long as it didn’t identify an individual business.
See? Absolutely nothing to worry about.

So, what will all of this new tax revenue be used for? Again, funny you should ask:
Part of the receipts would be used to finance an “ombudsman for sex workers” who would help prostitutes who have complaints or want to leave prostitution and enter another profession.
An ombudsman for sex workers. Now there is something to pad a nanny stater's resume.

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