Gov. Paterson’s proposed $121 billion budget hits New Yorkers in their iPods – and nickels-and-dimes them in lots of other places, too.
Trying to close a $15.4 billion budget gap, Paterson called for 88 new fees and a host of other taxes, including an “iPod tax” that taxes the sale of downloaded music and other “digitally delivered entertainment services.”
“We’re going to have to take some extreme measures,” Paterson said Tuesday after unveiling the slash-and-burn budget.
The proposal, which needs legislative approval, did not include broad-based income tax increases, but relied on smaller ones to raise $4.1 billion from cash-strapped New Yorkers.
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Movie tickets, taxi rides, soda, beer, wine, cigars and massages would be taxed under Paterson’s proposal. It also extends sales taxes to cable and satellite TV services and removes the tax exemption for clothes costing less than $110.
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“The governor is nickel-and-diming working class families,” said Ron Deutsch, executive director of New Yorkers for Fiscal Fairness, an advocacy group.
State Conservative Party Chairman Michael Long warned that reinstating the sales tax on clothing and shoes will drive people to New Jersey, where they will also gas up their cars and pick up their wine, spirits and soda because the prices are less due to lower taxes. “You’re sending notice to the people of New York that we really don’t want you here,” Long said. “The governor proposed flat spending, but why not actually cut the budget before raising taxes and fees?”