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State Assemblyman Proposes Porn Tax

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

A California legislative committee has put off a vote on a controversial pornography tax.

Democratic Assemblyman Charles Calderon proposed a 25% tax hike on adult entertainment such as strip clubs, DVD's and pay-per-view movies. He says it would help pay for programs related to the effects of the industry like drug use and sexually transmitted diseases.

Shelley Lubben is a former adult entertainer who supports the tax.
Lubben:   "I was exposed to sexually transmitted disease, which is a non-curable disease. I was also exposed to drugs and alcohol every single day. Yes, there are drugs on the set."

Calderon estimates the tax would bring in up to 700 million dollars a year. Diane Duke is with the adult entertainment, industry supported Free Speech Coalition. She says the increase would drive the lucrative industry away: 

Duke:  "Make no mistake. Our industry will leave the state. A 25% multi-use tax on our industry would just be destructive."

The Revenue and Taxation committee did not take a scheduled vote on the bill Monday. It could reschedule a vote in the future.

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