After promising that Louisville’s adult entertainment ordinance would take effect by Jan. 1, city officials will have to delay enforcement of the controversial law as a result of failing to send out proper notification to strip club owners and a pending appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The ordinance was passed by the Metro Council six years ago, and prohibits full nudity, lap dances and customers from directly tipping the dancers. It also requires club owners and strippers to obtain proper licensing and creates a six-foot buffer zone between patrons and performers.
When the legislation was first introduced, its co-sponsors rallied support by raising concerns over the perceived ills of adult entertainment businesses, citing declining property values, prostitution and drugs. The city bill was quickly challenged in state court by club owners, who argued that the bill unfairly targeted their businesses.
In October, however, the Kentucky Supreme Court upheld all provisions in the ordinance, ending the legal battle and surprising many residents who had forgotten about the crusade against g-strings.
From Jerry’s kids:
“It’s ridiculous,” says Milford Renfrow, who owns Foxy Lady Gentlemen’s Club, a plaintiff in the lawsuit. “Every adult I’ve talked to is in disbelief that they are legislating us out of business.”
“There are probably up to 2,000 jobs that are going to be lost in this town alone,” he says. “And there is no doubt about this: It will put us out of business for sure.”
Initially, LEO Weekly was told by the Jefferson County Attorney’s office that Metro officials would start enforcing the law at the beginning of next year once letters to strip club owner were mailed by Nov. 1. Since then, however, no notifications have been received and the county attorney’s office has cited its “heavy workload” from other case as the culprit.
“We’ve had some pretty heavy litigation and simply haven’t been able to move it along like we originally planned,” says Bill Patteson, adding that the original plaintiffs have appealed to the nation’s highest court. “The other part of this is the other side has filed a motion with the U.S. Supreme Court to hear their issue with the ordinance. Now we’re waiting on the high court to decide if they’ll hear the case. If we were to move forard and they rule agianst us and we’ve done a bunch of enforcement then there’s a liabilty to the city that we wish to avoid.”