- Associated Press - Thursday, May 28, 2015

CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) - Lawmakers unveiled changes to Nevada’s live entertainment tax that they say will capture revenue from an evolving entertainment landscape and close confusing loopholes in state statute.

Republican Sen. Mark Lipparelli presented the much-anticipated changes on Thursday as an amendment to SB266. Lawmakers say businesses are often unsure whether they should be collecting the tax because of vague rules about whether a musical performance is prominent enough at a venue to warrant the levy.

“What we’ve done in this bill is triggered live entertainment (tax) on admissions, and what we’ve taken out is a lot of language that’s been the subject of litigation, confusion,” Lipparelli said.

The bill proposes a 9 percent tax on the admission fee for live entertainment activities, and an 8 percent rate for boxing matches. The current system calls for a 5 percent tax on venues that hold at least 7,500 people, or a 10 percent tax for venues smaller than that.

The new measure would also include strip clubs and escorts, although prostitution is not covered by the “escort” definition. Patrons wouldn’t have to pay the tax at a venue if the live entertainment there was simply go-go dancers in the background or karaoke.

Lipparelli said large outdoor events such as the Burning Man festival would also fall under the purview of the bill.

“The goal we had here was to broaden the base of this tax,” Lipparelli said.

The bill is expected to get a committee vote Friday.


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