Many have been the highest-profile businesses in their sparsely populated regions, and their decline hurts already-stretched county budgets and marks the end to local institutions — though not the universally beloved sort.
Recent years have not been kind to Nevada. The month recession that began in December still holds a grip on the state.
Most brothels are in rural areas with few people and employers. The brothels pay little to the state, sending most of their fees and tax payments to the counties that oversee them. Every dollar helps. In Lyon County, where the largest private employers are an Amazon.
The brothels also pay room and property taxes to the county, along with sales tax to the state on merchandise, including t-shirts. The women, independent contractors, say they typically give half to the house.
The houses were woven into the fabric of the American West in the days of the pioneers, said Barb Brents, a sociology professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. While some states banned them, Nevada left the question to local governments in counties with fewer thanresidents.
A woman le a customer through a locked door. A year-old redhead who calls herself Phoenixxx twirls on a pole atop the bar in a tight striped dress, then moves to a corner where she repeats the moves, this time in the nude.
The spectacle masks the fall of the fleshpot. Prostitution is shifting online, said Scott Peppet, who teaches law at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and writes about technology and markets.
Craigslist, the free online classified-advertising site, eliminated its adult-services section in in response to pressure from state attorneys general. Many shifted to closely held Back. Spank Me. Pull My Hair!!!!
Some women see freelance escorting as dangerous work. In Decemberthe bodies of four prostitutes who had advertised online were found near a New York beach.
Some Nevada brothels have guards and panic buttons in the rooms. Workers must be examined by a doctor weekly. Hof, 66, her boss, said the good times will return. The recession allowed him to buy five struggling brothels, bringing his holdings to seven.
Flint, 79, the lobbyist, said he began representing the industry in and now has about 10 clients, including the Bunny Ranch. Flint said rural brothels that depend on truck drivers have been among the hardest hit. Flint has hedged his bet on fornication: He also owns Chapel of the Bells, a Reno wedding service, where his office is decorated with portraits of Napoleon.
Girls, Girls, Girls! Truckers Welcome.
Get Off Now. Sitting at the bar, he predicted a stable future. Nevada brothels wither as Internet disrupts oldest trade. Show Caption.
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