Introducing the Democrats Newest Idea: The Music Tax
The party that brought you the rain tax is now bringing you something just as absurd.
Baltimore County Democrats have been happier than in pig in slop ever since Democratic County Executive Johnny Olszewski, Jr. was elected. They knew that they finally found a Democrat that would raise taxes far above and beyond where they were needed.
Democrats on the Baltimore County Council have taken the ball and run with it, as Baltimore County Councilman Tom Quirk has come up with something brand new: The Music Tax.
The tax was first reported by WCBM Radio.
The proposal would require that any bar that has a DJ or has live music has to pay a fee to the county. Seriously.
From the bill’s description:
FOR the purpose of permitting live musical entertainment in certain areas; specifying certain requirements and restrictions; providing a process for obtaining a use permit for live musical entertainment; providing a process for the suspension or revocation of a use permit; renewal of a use permit; appeals; and generally relating to live musical entertainment.
Quirk has the gall to actually say in the bill that the reason that bars need to pay a fee to play music is public safety:
449.1. – FINDINGS AND PURPOSE.
LIVE MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENT PROVIDES A BENEFIT TO COUNTY CITIZENS AND BUSINESSES, HOWEVER, IT CAN ALSO SIGNIFICANTLY IMPACT THE PUBLIC HEALTH, SAFETY, AND GENERAL WELFARE OF A COMMUNITY. THE PURPOSE OF THIS SECTION IS TO ESTABLISH REASONABLE REGULATIONS FOR THE PRESENTATION OF LIVE MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENT IN ORDER TO PROTECT THE
CHARACTER OF THE NEARBY NEIGHBORHOODS AND THE PUBLIC HEALTH, SAFETY, AND GENERAL WELFARE, WHILE PROVIDING LIVE MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENT OPTIONS FOR COUNTY CITIZENS AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES IN BUSINESS AND COMMERCIAL AREAS.
But this bill goes on. An eleven-page bill laying out exactly the why and the how a bar can pay a tax and apply for a permit in order to bring in a DJ or to have live music in any manner.
Every time you think Democrats can’t get any more absurd, they do. It’s absurd and ridiculous to think that having a band or having a DJ can somehow “significantly impact the public health, safety, and general welfare of a community.” Who does he think is going to see live music in Baltimore County, anyway? Does Tom Quirk think that anybody who wants to go to a bar that has a DJ or wants to go see a live show is a hooligan that is a danger to public safety and, ergo, the establishment hosting the event should have to pay for the privilege to have them?
This bill is absurd and this bill is insulting to the bar owners and music fans of Baltimore County. Quirk should withdraw this bill immediately and try to extort some tax dollars from someplace else. Tom Quirk’s Music Tax is way out of tune.