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safe harbor fund ga

Voters cast ballots in Georgia's primary election at a polling site in a firehouse Tuesday, March 1, 2016, in Atlanta.
David Goldman / Associated Press

An amendment increasing penalties for human trafficking crimes won approval in Georgia, and will also impose a new tax on strip clubs and other adult entertainment businesses.

Amendment Two would create the Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund, to provide rehabilitative and social services to children who have been sexually exploited.

It would draw those funds from additional fines placed on convicted sex traffickers and an annual $5,000 fee on adult entertainment businesses.

Eboni Lemon / WABE

Tuesday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress":

Lisa Hagen / WABE

At the very end of the ballot, Georgia voters are facing a question about how to address what some believe is a serious and growing problem in the state and beyond: child sex trafficking. If approved, Georgia will establish a permanent fund to serve this select group, based on research and statistics some worry can be distorted by extreme emotions this issue raises for many people.

If it’s adopted, the referendum will be the cherry on a legislative sundae that anti-trafficking advocates and lawmakers have been constructing since 2009.

Fulton County Commision Chairman John Eaves in the WABE Atlanta Studio, April 9, 2015.
Alison Guillory / WABE

Monday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress":

Michelle Wirth / WABE

Gov. Nathan Deal plans to sign a bill Tuesday that would levy an annual $5,000 fee on strip clubs and fine pimps $2,500 to set up a fund to help sexually exploited children.

Sen. Renee Unterman, R-Buford, has been trying for six years to get the Legislature to set up a Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund to pay for housing, health care and other services for children forced into prostitution, for which she says Atlanta has become a hub.