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New Ordinance Killing Strip Club’s Business

Louisville, Ky- Jefferson County Circuit Judge Stephen P. Ryan decides this week whether to reconsider a law that went on the books December 17. In November, an ordinance was enacted to require adult bookstores to close at 1 am and strip clubs to offer no nude dancing after that time. The law went into effect on the 17th.

The clubs, primarily P.T.’s Showclub in downtown Louisville, are saying that the law’s killing ’em and is affecting the incomes of the women who work as independent contractors, i.e., strippers. P.T’s, alone, employs between 55 to 60 women many of whom make a 100 mile commute from Cincinnati.

The law, as enacted, dictates that the women wear bikini tops and hot pants after 1 am, that they don’t touch their bottoms or come in close contact with the male, and sometimes female, customers; and that tips are now thrown on the stages or placed in the girls’ hands or shoes. The law also forbids the quaint strip club custom of stuffing money in G-strings which are now off limits or virtually non existent.

But now Judge Ryan has agreed to reconsider the law and said he will probably make a decision this week.

Before the ordinance went into effect many of the women could average $1,500 for three nights’ work. With the ordinance putting a restriction on nudity, many of the dancers are down to earning $400 for five nights work.

“Before the ordinance, I was at least guaranteed $200 on a slow night,” says a slim 21-year-old with long, highlighted blond hair whose stage name is Jade. “Now, I take home $30 to $50 after tip out.” The girls are required to fork over $20 a night to the house, and $25 on weekends.

The dancers aren’t the only ones hurting. According to club manager Brian Franson, the club’s revenue has decreased by as much as 40 percent since the ordinance went into effect.

P.T.’s is a chain with 16 locations nationwide and has been in Louisville since 1997.

Franson says the past few weeks have been the worst the club has ever experienced, and that the club’s attendance figures drop considerably when the clothes come on.

Franson says he will soon have to start laying off some of the three dozen or so bartenders, servers and administrative and maintenance workers he employs. The exotic dancers are independent contractors, not club employees.


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