December 2, 2023


An Interactive Session

The next New York swindle: Taxing us for streaming TV shows, podcasts and online games (opinion)

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. – If there is dollars to be designed on the backs of New Yorkers, you can guess that the state’s Democratic lawmakers will come across a way to make it occur.

Situation in issue: The shift in Albany to tax us for electronic membership streaming.

That’s suitable. We could now get dinged when we digitally stream Tv shows, podcasts, audiobooks, on the internet games or songs.

And you thought you’d discovered your alternative to having to pay as a result of the nose for cable Tv or satellite deals that involved too lots of channels that you did not want to watch.

Under a proposal very first noted by NY1 Information, the Democrat-led Assembly’s spending plan strategy would slap a 4% condition revenue tax and a 4% neighborhood tax on subscription streaming products and solutions. Cable and satellite would be excluded.

The income would go towards mass transit as effectively as to the MTA in the New York Town location.

Funds from the tax is envisioned to elevate $29 million for the MTA in the first yr and as a lot as $63 million in long term a long time.

Large whoop, as we applied to say back in the working day. The MTA’s finances is just about $20 billion. The authority’s deficit is as significantly as $3 billion. Is $63 million a calendar year actually likely to make that a great deal of a big difference?

Oh, and provided the quick availability of pirated material on the World wide web, excellent luck gathering all that tax profits.

And Assembly Democrats really do not prevent there. They also want to demand us 25 cents each individual time we have an on the web or in-shop obtain shipped to our households.

Mainly because if something’s handy, we shouldn’t thoughts spending for it. That’ll go down terrific all through the up coming pandemic. Goods like drugs, health-related provides, food stuff, diapers and toddler formulation would be exempt from the tax. At least at the outset.

When will point out lawmakers wise up that New Yorkers are on to their sport? So a lot of what they do is supposedly to raise money to preserve mass transit. It’s become the all-objective excuse for what are just tax hikes, simple and simple.

Revenue pours into the transit procedure, but the MTA constantly wants extra. And the support never ever looks up to snuff. By no means head that Staten Island does not even have a subway.

Staten Islanders know all much too very well about how their toll revenue from the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge goes to assistance fund the Prolonged Island Rail Highway and the Metro-North Rail Highway, two MTA rail strains that borough inhabitants make scant use of.

We also don’t forget that there was a commuter tax in position for 33 a long time that positioned a levy on suburbanites who commuted into the town. The logic was that they benefited from police, hearth and sanitation products and services although in this article so they must enable pay back the freight.

That tax introduced in as much as $360 million to metropolis coffers just about every year till dread Democratic Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver killed it in 1999 in a bid to gain the Dems a condition Senate seat. That transfer has expense us billions.

A 2015 report from then-town Comptroller Scott Stringer stated that New York Town citizens and organizations contributed more than $10.1 billion to the MTA in the 2014 fiscal year. That included taxes and subsidies as perfectly as direct expenses like expenditures for NYPD transit officers and retirees, and credit card debt company on money funding associated to transportation.

When all was claimed and accomplished, Stringer explained that just about every metropolis home in effect compensated a $130 “invisible fare” every thirty day period to the MTA in advance of ever shelling out a fare or toll.

And but the MTA continue to rattles the cup. And every day New Yorkers are anticipated to foot the monthly bill.


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