December 6, 2023


Enhance your play

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

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. – If there is money to be designed on the backs of New Yorkers, you can wager that the state’s Democratic lawmakers will find a way to make it happen.

Circumstance in point: The move in Albany to tax us for digital membership streaming.

That is appropriate. We could now get dinged when we digitally stream Television reveals, podcasts, audiobooks, online games or new music.

And you imagined you’d identified your answer to paying by means of the nose for cable Tv set or satellite packages that included too numerous channels that you did not want to look at.

Beneath a proposal first described by NY1 News, the Democrat-led Assembly’s spending budget system would slap a 4% state product sales tax and a 4% nearby tax on subscription streaming goods. Cable and satellite would be excluded.

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

Money from the tax is predicted to raise $29 million for the MTA in the first 12 months and as a great deal as $63 million in foreseeable future several years.

Large whoop, as we applied to say back in the working day. The MTA’s finances is virtually $20 billion. The authority’s deficit is as considerably as $3 billion. Is $63 million a 12 months genuinely heading to make that much of a distinction?

Oh, and provided the effortless availability of pirated content material on the World-wide-web, fantastic luck amassing all that tax revenue.

And Assembly Democrats don’t quit there. They also want to demand us 25 cents each and every time we have an on the internet or in-store order sent to our residences.

Since if something’s handy, we should not thoughts having to pay for it. That’ll go down fantastic through the subsequent pandemic. Things like drugs, medical supplies, food items, diapers and toddler formulation would be exempt from the tax. At the very least at the outset.

When will condition lawmakers intelligent up that New Yorkers are onto their sport? So a great deal of what they do is supposedly to elevate resources to conserve mass transit. It’s become the all-intent justification for what are just tax hikes, basic and straightforward.

Funds pours into the transit program, but the MTA normally requires additional. And the support under no circumstances would seem up to snuff. Never mind that Staten Island doesn’t even have a subway.

Staten Islanders know all far too perfectly about how their toll funds from the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge goes to enable fund the Lengthy Island Rail Road and the Metro-North Rail Street, two MTA rail strains that borough residents make scant use of.

We also remember that there was a commuter tax in put for 33 many years that put a levy on suburbanites who commuted into the town. The logic was that they benefited from police, fireplace and sanitation services even though right here so they need to enable fork out the freight.

That tax introduced in as significantly as $360 million to town coffers each and every calendar year right up until dread Democratic Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver killed it in 1999 in a bid to gain the Dems a condition Senate seat. That move has expense us billions.

A 2015 report from then-town Comptroller Scott Stringer stated that New York Metropolis residents and firms contributed far more than $10.1 billion to the MTA in the 2014 fiscal 12 months. That incorporated taxes and subsidies as effectively as direct expenditures like expenses for NYPD transit officers and retirees, and credit card debt service on funds funding related to transportation.

When all was claimed and completed, Stringer reported that every city house in impact paid a $130 “invisible fare” every month to the MTA ahead of ever paying a fare or toll.

And nonetheless the MTA still rattles the cup. And everyday New Yorkers are anticipated to foot the monthly bill.


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