Chicago Illinois Strip Club Tax
By: Mansoor Ansari Attorney at Law
Is there a link between violence against women and strip clubs? Is it fair? Is it penalizing? Who pays? How much will a club have to pay? Is it an official sales tax enforced by the Illinois Department of Revenue? These are all questions taken into consideration by the Governor of Illinois when he signed the new strip club tax into law in Chicago, Illinois.
The law takes effect Jan. 1, 2013, and it will place an annual surcharge on strip clubs that have live nude dancing and permit alcohol. Club owners could pay $3 per customer or pay a graduated amount based on their sales. The revenues will go to a special fund devoted to preventing sexual violence and counseling its victims.
Strip clubs in Illinois will have to remit a share of their revenues, starting in 2013, to help fund programs to prevent sexual assault. The new tax on the clubs that will raise funds, helping to reverse several years of funding cuts for rape crisis centers. The law has also incited debate over how strong of a link can be drawn between strip clubs and violent crime, and whether those businesses should pay out to fight the problems.
Illinois rape crisis centers lost 25% of their state funding over the last four years as the government grapples with mounting debts. Many lawmakers agree that they need to fund sexual assault prevention and critical services for rape victims. Club owners argued it was unfair to link their businesses with crime and violence, but one said Saturday that the measure signed into law was a reasonable compromise. From a public policy standpoint, it seems as though there are at least a handful of people that acknowledge the dangers associated with strip clubs and violence against women, or at least the employees that work at such establishments.
The new tax was one of three laws Quinn signed Saturday that are designed to provide greater protection for women against sexual assault and domestic violence.
One of the other laws aims to bring a voluntary course to high schools around the state designed to increase awareness of domestic violence, sexual assault, date rape, bullying and suicide. The course has already been offered in a pilot program at two schools.
The third law allows prosecutors to use prior domestic violence offenses to support their arguments in first- and second-degree murder cases involving domestic violence.
“Violence against women has occurred in small towns, urban neighborhoods and college campuses,” Quinn said. “These new laws will help us hold the predators accountable as well as prevent behavior which can lead to sexual assaults.”
Consult a sales tax attorney in Chicago for more information 312-265-5626.
Mansoor Ansari J.D., LL.M. (TAX)