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Illinois strip club tax brings in less revenue

Published: Wednesday, April 16, 2014 11:45 a.m. CDT

SPRINGFIELD — Illinois officials say a strip club tax has generated less than 40 percent of the money that was expected when the surcharge was approved.

The "pole tax" raised about $380,000 in 2013 — far less than the $1 million predicted when the measure passed the General Assembly in 2012, according to a report by the Springfield bureau of Lee Enterprises newspapers.

Strip clubs can pay a $3 tax for every customer or an annual fee that ranges from $5,000 to $25,000 based on sales. All the money raised by the tax is earmarked for rape crisis centers.

Polly Poskin, executive director of the Illinois Coalition Against Sexual Assault, attributed the lower-than-expected revenue to the fact that the requirement only applies to strip clubs that sell or allow alcohol. Chicago bans alcohol at its strip clubs.

"We're very grateful for the amount we're getting," she said.

Sue Hofer, spokeswoman for the Illinois Department of Revenue, says 37 companies paid the tax.

The Illinois Department of Human Services will distribute the money beginning this summer.

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