If Clark County Won’t Budge on Prostitution, Don’t Expect Porn to Be Welcome There

Check out our advertisers www.risingstarpr.com www.auditionporn.com/tour1, www.eruptionxl.com www.sexucrave.com and www.vantagedist.com/page/manufacturers/id/1895/manufacturer/Brandxxx_Pictures.html; www.galaxypublicity.com

Follow Gene Ross at twitter@GeneRoss3; Follow AdultFYI at twitter@Adultfyi1

from www.lvrj.com – The new legislative session just got under way, but it already seems like the same old story for the world’s oldest profession in Nevada.

Longtime brothel industry lobbyist George Flint hoped to finally see some action this time around on legislation that could open Clark County to legal prostitution.

But lawmakers – to the surprise of no one, least of all Flint – have made it clear that such a measure has no hope of a hearing.

“The bill won’t even be drafted,” Flint said.

Meanwhile, another piece of prostitution-related legislation is on the fast track to approval.

Assembly Bill 67 takes aim at pimps, hammering them with longer prison sentences designed to break the hold they have over the women they exploit.

Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto and Assemblyman John Hambrick, R-Las Vegas, rolled out the measure last week at a news conference featuring the mothers of girls victimized by the illicit sex trade.

To Flint, it’s further evidence of Nevada’s squeamish relation¬≠ship with its most unique and polarizing industry. While “everyone walks around with their AB67 pins,” he can’t even get lawmakers to meet with him to discuss a measure he thinks could genuinely weaken illegal prostitution in Nevada by replacing it with something safe, well-regulated and taxable.

Flint said the illegal sex trade is a billion-dollar business in Clark County, “and it all goes into the pockets of the exploiters and the pimps.”

He says legal, closely regulated bordellos in the county could bring in as much as $400 million a year in tax revenue while helping to curb the crime and disease that often come with illegal prostitution.

Bordellos are legal in all but five Nevada counties, but Clark is the only county that is barred by state law from even considering legalization.

Flint had hoped to work with freshman Assemblywoman Michele Fiore, R-Las Vegas, on a bill to repeal the Clark-specific law prohibiting legal bordellos in counties with populations of more than 700,000. If successful, the measure would have cleared the way for county officials to legalize brothels if they so chose.

The idea never got very far, in large part because no one was really pushing for it besides Flint, Fiore said.

“It’s county-driven, and Clark County isn’t knocking on my door and asking me for that,” she said. “But I’m not opposed to having the discussion. We have an illegal prostitution problem in Clark County. I can’t drive down my own Strip without seeing it.”

Flint understands Fiore’s reluctance. He said he has learned not to take such setbacks personally.

No bill this time around just means he can relax a little.

“I get to have an easy session and go home at 3 o’clock instead of working my ass off,” Flint said.

This is his 51st year as a lobbyist in Carson City, where he got his start advocating on behalf of wedding chapels like the one he still owns in Reno. When the 78th Legislature convenes in 2015, he will be 81.

“I’m not sure I’ve got another session in me,” Flint said. “What saddens me is the legislators know we’re right.”

If that’s the case, however, they certainly aren’t saying so publicly.

Assembly Speaker Marilyn Kirk­patrick, D-North Las Vegas, and Senate Majority Leader Mo Denis, D-Las Vegas, both told the Las Vegas Sun last week that they would not support any legislation that could lead to legal brothels in Clark County.

AB67 seeks to replace the current “pandering” offense with a crime of sexual trafficking designed to increase sentences to up to 20 years against pimps who turn girls into prostitutes.

Bobbi Davis [pictured] finds the whole thing a little irritating.

Davis is the longtime owner of the Shady Lady, a licensed Nye County brothel along a lonely stretch of U.S. Highway 95, 150 miles northwest of Las Vegas. She is also known for her fight with the state – and Masto – over a law that prohibits businesses like hers from advertising in Clark and other Nevada counties where brothels are illegal.

Her First Amendment case, taken up by the American Civil Liberties Union, eventually ended in defeat in federal court.

Davis is still mad about that. She thinks it’s hypocritical for Nevada’s attorney general to declare war on illegal prostitution now after she fought so hard to limit the legal version of the business.

“I know (sex) trafficking is bad. I know there are girls getting sucked into it against their wills,” Davis said. “So you get tough on the pimps. Big deal. There will be a new pimp waiting to pick them up when the old one’s gone.”

As far as Davis is concerned, the only way to combat the illicit sex trade in Clark County is to target the demand – something she said the Nevada attorney general and others seem largely disinterested in doing.

Davis said most tourists – and a fair number of locals – are under the mistaken impression that prostitution is already legal everywhere in Nevada. And who could blame them? Visitors to Las Vegas are barraged by handbills, mobile billboards and phone-book ads promising girls direct to you.

Davis said state and county officials could go a long way toward curbing prostitution in Las Vegas by requiring a notice about it being illegal on every ad for an escort service or shady massage parlor, almost like the warning label on cigarette packs.

Officials also could make it easier for businesses like hers to promote themselves to people who might otherwise be enticed into breaking the law in Clark County, she said.

Where Davis parts company with the lobbyist for her industry is over expanding the legal sex trade to Las Vegas. She thinks Flint’s quest will only anger people and draw negative attention to brothels statewide.

“If Clark County wanted it, they would have done it years ago,” she said.

AB67 will be heard by the state Senate and Assembly judiciary committees in a joint meeting Wednesday. That same day, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will address the Legislature for the first time since 2011, when he made headlines by calling on his home state to abolish legal prostitution once and for all.

A spokeswoman for Reid said the U.S. senator from Searchlight has no plans to broach the subject this time around, but Flint plans to be ready, just in case.

He’s also gearing up for the biennial fight over whether Nevada’s brothels ought to be taxed.

The industry has practically begged for inclusion in the tax code, but some in Carson City have resisted the move for fear that it will be seen as an endorsement of the sex trade.

Fiore has no such concerns.

“Don’t tell me by taxing them we’re legitimizing them. They’re already legitimate because they are a legal business,” she said. “These girls want to be taxed, then tax that tush.”

It’s too soon to say how many of Fiore’s colleagues share her view.

Finally winning that fight would make a nice consolation prize for Flint, so long as the tax is not too big.

It’s not the major victory he was hoping for, but in a squeamish Silver State, it might just be the best he can do.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*