The Court of Appeals is the highest court in New York State. Usually the court handles cases that are considered to be extremely important and weighty, like cases dealing with the death penalty or whether same sex marriages should be allowed. Now it seems that lap dancing has also found its way to this high court of law.
Nite Moves is a club located in Latham, N.Y. The club is one that offers private dancers who are fully nude and is the only one of its kind in the Albany, New York area. This past September, the club sent a lawyer to the Court of Appeals to ask the judges to exempt the club from paying over one hundred thousand dollars in taxes on admission fees. The reason that the club should be exempt, the lawyer argued, was that the dances performed were actually choreographed performances just like a Broadway musical’s dances or a ballet performance.
This was a highly unusual case to land in the Court of Appeals, but the lawyers and judges did their best to treat it like any other case, though they did seem to be a bit more entertained than they usually were while doing their job. It’s not every day that lap dancing, pole dancing, and nude dancers are discussed in a court of law.
When one judge remarked that the dancers were not a ballet troupe, the club’s lawyer agreed but argued that it wasn’t up to the state to decide what was or was not a type of dance, and therefore could or could not be a type of art.
However, the lawyer for the State showed that the club was not able to prove that the private dances were choreographed. Lap dancing on the open floor and pole dances could be considered to be choreographed dances but what went on in private rooms could not be proven to be choreographed. This is because there are moves that are common in various types of exotic dances and since the moves are similar the State did not consider the dances to be choreographed routines, no matter how difficult the moves actually are to perform.
In fact, the State actually is able to tax the club on its admission charges because of the fact that its sales of beverages make up a lot of the club’s income. This means that the club has to pay taxes on all of the entrance fees because the sales of refreshments, with the club’s rule of every patron buying at least two drinks that are not alcoholic, are higher than what the club collects in the admission fees.
The problem is that the club already paid those taxes seven years ago in 2005 but challenged the rule by trying to get an exemption based on the artistry of the dances. The club argued that the dancers are trained artists, but the court ruled that there was no evidence of choreographed dances nor that the dancers had gone through any type of training.
Even the club’s lawyer pointing out that pole dancing is being considered as a possible Olympic sport couldn’t sway the judges who upheld the 2005 ruling that the club was not exempt from the tax laws. Despite the ruling, Nite Move’s lawyer insists that the dancers are talented enough to be considered for an Olympic team should one be made and that the club should be granted an artistic exemption.
Any customer who comes to RI Dolls can see that the dancers have great skill. Each dance is a work of art – whether it is recognized by the tax codes or not. The Rhode Island Dolls dancers work hard to perfect their routines and to please the customers who come to see them every day. They may not have graduated with a degree in exotic dancing, but they have put a lot of work into each dance and have trained themselves to be the best exotic dancers in the business. So no matter what the courts say, when you come to RI Dolls, come and enjoy the beautiful dances the dolls do and let them know just how much you appreciate all of their hard work to turn their dance routines into works of art.