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Speaker Kirkpatrick Unveils Cash Grab

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Woman performs pole dance. (credit: Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images)

Woman performs pole dance. (credit: Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images)

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(Las Vegas, NV) — A long-awaited bill revamping Nevada’s live entertainment tax has been introduced by Assembly Speaker Marilyn Kirkpatrick. And she’s going after your wallet.

AB498 seeks to close loopholes in the current law and expand it to other activities that Kirkpatrick says have been granted exemptions over the years.

Reno Republican Senator Greg Brower tells KXNT the tax will hit the middle class the hardest.

“The impact that this is going to have on working folks in Nevada who might like to the movies or go see a concert are now going to be stuck with a pretty significant tax,” says Brower.

It sets an eight percent tax rate and applies to a slew of activities currently exempt — green fees, movies tickets, gym memberships and strip clubs. Kirkpatrick estimates it could generate about $50 million.

The live entertainment tax currently is two-tiered rate. Large venues pay 10 percent, smaller ones 5 percent.

Brower believes that Kirkpatrick didn’t think through who the tax may affect when she drafted the legislation.

“You have to take into account people’s ability to pay and the impact that a new tax is going to have on ordinary, working families. If this entertainment tax is being billed as one that is simply closing some loopholes, from what I have seen so far I would have to disagree,” says Brower.

Kirkpatrick says 38 states have an admissions tax. She modeled her bill after a similar law in Florida, which like Nevada relies heavily on a tourism economy. It also has no personal income tax.

Dennis Silvers hosts the 19th Hole on KXNT, Saturdays at 8 a.m. and feels everyone from tourists to locals will feel the pinch.

“Not only will the resort players grumble about it but I think the local` players will grumble about it as well. I just don’t think it’s a good idea,” says Silvers.

The Assembly Taxation Committee will hear the bill Tuesday.

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