New York wants to double-dip from ride-hail companies

Uber car in New York City
Uber car in New York City
Mike Dotta/Shutterstock

New York wants to double-dip from ride-hail companies

An Assembly measure would add a new $1 tax on such rides in upstate and Long Island.
March 29, 2018

A “phase one” for congestion pricing in Manhattan isn’t the only state budget proposal affecting ride-hailing companies like Uber and Lyft. An Assembly measure would add a new $1 tax on such rides in upstate and Long Island – and business groups aren’t pleased.

“A dollar may not seem like much from the halls of the Assembly, but on the streets of Buffalo, Rochester or Mineola, it is significant – the equivalent of an additional 8 percent tax on an average ride,” 10 business groups wrote in a letter to Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and state Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan this week. The groups – including the Business Council of New York State, the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce and the Long Island Business Development Council – noted there are already several fees in place.

“The new combined tax rate of 12.5 percent would burden riders in our communities with the most expensive rideshare taxes in the nation. It would certainly have a chilling effect on the industry, and in turn, our economy,” they write. “Finally, it is unfair and disingenuous to hide this new tax in the complex New York City congestion pricing plan. This proposal should be debated on its’ own merits, not hidden in a proposal focused on pressing downstate needs."

Jon Lentz
is City & State’s editor-in-chief.
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