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Germany's 'remarkable' prostitution tax meter September 1, While it may look like a parking meter, this device actually requires that prostitutes in Bonn, Germany, help fill government coffers before hitting the streets.
It's also taxable. While it's fairly easy to collect a "sex tax" from brothels, "sauna clubs," and other sex purveying establishments, it's trickier to make sure freelance streetwalkers pay up.
The city of Bonn has a solution: An automated street meter where prostitutes pay a nightly fee to ply their trade. How do they work? Here, a brief guide: How do the meters work? That buys the prostitute a day of legal work time, regardless of the number of clients. Prostitution is only legal in Bonn between p. What's the punishment for failing to pay? First time sex-tax dodgers will get a warning.
Bonn has about working prostitutes, with an average of 20 walking the streets on any given night. Is the tax controversial? Freelance sex workers aren't happy. Juanita Rosina Henning of prostitute support group Dona Carmen says the meters amount to double taxation, since prostitutes already pay income tax. Bonn is casting the meters as a fairness measure that puts streetwalkers on an even tax footing with sex workers in fixed establishments. Henning disagrees : "This has nothing to do with fiscal equality.
It has been legal in German since , and the biggest complaint has reportedly been about prostitutes having sex with clients on residential streets — and even in people's yards. Will this plan have any effect on prostitution? Some commentators think so. That's what's so "remarkable" about the system, says Ryan Avent in The Economist. In "normal markets," we'd expect taxation to decrease a service. But there's also the real chance the sex meters could increase prostitution "by regularizing the system.