Lap Dances To Become Tax Exempt?
Here’s one born from our own neighboring city and capital of the state. A gentleman’s club racked up a tax bill of $125k in back-owed sales taxes and is trying to get out of paying it on account of the fact that what the women do there is art and here’s why:
W. Andrew McCullough, an attorney for the suburban Albany strip joint, told the Court of Appeals that admission fees and lap dances at the club should be freed of state sales taxes under an exemption that applies to ‘‘dramatic or musical arts performances.’’
He said that lap dancing is an art form and that, in any case, the state is not qualified to make such determinations, and that making such distinctions would be a violation of the constitutional right to freedom of expression.
Of course the law was intended for ballet and theater companies with which choreographed dance is their life passion, artistic goal and form of expression that can be freely shared with all ages. So naturally New York State is taking a dim view to this and not from dim atmospheric lighting either.
Robert Goldfarb, an attorney for the state, said that nobody would visit the club if the dancers didn’t remove their clothes. He also argued that the exemption applies to ‘‘choreographed’’ performances, and what the Nite Moves dancers do doesn’t qualify.
True what these women do is definitely a skill and not an easy one either, but it’s not an accepted public one. After all, and speaking of course generally, most women who are attracted to dance in clubs do so mainly for the money and their brand of dancing is designed to make men believe they are interested in them so that they’ll keep plunking down the benjamins. This is their job and if it weren’t for the dough, I doubt the majority of those that dance would subject themselves to that environment. Be that as it may, here is a dancer’s comment who works at the club in question:
“It’s definitely a form of art,” one dancer at Nite Moves told the AP news agency. “Some girls are up there practicing for hours when nobody’s in here.”
Now while theater and ballet dancers are paid for their time onstage too, it is their heart for the art that drives them first and foremost and getting paid for doing what they love is a bonus albeit a necessity. What this night club is doing feels like a perversion of the spirit of the law and just think of what will happen if this law is overturned.
But on the other hand, nude portraits and painting nude models is considered art too although inappropriate for younger viewers or others that would find it offensive, so how is this different? You be the judge…