Louisiana Music Commission


New Orleans Amusement Tax Declared Unconstitutional


(NEW ORLEANS) Monday, January 26, 1998--Judge Robin M. Giarrusso today declared the City of New Orleans Amusement Tax, which levied an additional 5% tax burden on live music clubs with less than 1800 seats, unconstitutional.

Attorneys Mitch Landrieu and Justin Zitler, representing the Cat's Meow, a popular karaoke club on Bourbon Street, on December 15, 1997 appeared in Court seeking a Motion for Summary Judgment that the tax be declared unconstitutional. Judge Giarrusso agreed with the plaintiff and granted the motion in a ruling signed today.

"This is great news," said Ellis Marsalis, Chairman of the Louisiana Music Commission (LMC). "We've fought against this impediment to live music for more than five years. Now New Orleans will be able to maximize its live music industry and invite investment."

"There is no reason why New Orleans can't have the significant live music industry that we see in Branson, Missouri," LMC Executive Director Bernie Cyrus said. "This tax has been the biggest obstacle to the growth and success of live music. I believe the New Orleans music industry will now experience a renaissance."

The LMC has long contended that elimination of the tax would result in an increase in the number of live music clubs in the city and a growth in sales tax revenues that would offset the loss of Amusement tax revenues.


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Louisiana Music Commission
3330 N. Causeway Blvd. Suite 438
Metairie LA 70002
Phone: 504-838-5600 Fax: 504-838-5280

Email: lmc@louisianamusic.org

©1997, 1998 Louisiana Music Commission
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