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Upstate doesn’t agree with statewide tax to pay for MTA upgrades in NYC

Governor Kathy Hochul’s proposed payroll tax increase to aid the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s financial difficulties during the COVID-19 pandemic has met opposition from the New York State Assembly, which has suggested alternative measures such as surcharges on Uber rides and taxes on digital streaming services.

Under the proposed plan, the state would implement a 4 percent sales tax on digital streaming services to raise revenue for the MTA and the New York City subway system. However, this plan has faced criticism from residents outside of the city, who feel that they should not have to bear the burden of the MTA’s financial struggles.

Assemblyman Phil Steck, a Democrat, has stated that he does not support the proposed tax, but acknowledges the impact that New York City has on the rest of the state. He has suggested reinstating the stock transfer tax to raise funds for the MTA instead.

The Assembly Democrats have attempted to avoid raising the rates for the MTA, which has resulted in considering the streaming sales tax option. However, this tax has not been included in the budgets proposed by Hochul or the state Senate.

Several other states have already implemented similar taxes, and even cities like Chicago have added “Netflix taxes” to streaming services.