Strip Club ‘Pole Tax’ Goes Before Texas High Court

The so-called “pole tax” in Texas strip clubs is getting a peek from the state Supreme Court.

The court will hear arguments Thursday in San Antonio about whether a $5 entrance fee at strip clubs, mandated by state lawmakers in 2007, is unconstitutional. Many clubs have ignored the fee, which is intended to fund programs for sexual assault victims.

Lower courts have ruled the fee to be an improper regulation of free expression.

The state has so far collected more than $13.6 million from the fee, according to the state comptroller’s office. That money has been held in an account pending the outcome of the legal fight.

The Republican-led court is not expected to immediately issue a ruling.

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