The ‘Amazon ‘Tax’ and the ‘iTunes’ Tax’ Compared – City Room Blog

In April, the State Legislature approved a measure that requires out-of-state online retailers to collect state sales tax and remit it to New York State, a move projected to raise about $50 million a year from retailers like Amazon.

Now, Gov. David A. Paterson wants to impose a 4 percent sales tax on online downloads of music, ring tones, games, movies and other media from online retailers like Apple (which already has a sizable presence in New York State, unlike Amazon), as well as pay-per-view movies sold by cable television providers. The proposal would increase revenue, state officials say, by $15 million in the fiscal year that starts in April and $20 million each following fiscal year.

The two tax-collection efforts — the first has been commonly called the “Amazon tax,” and the second the “iTunes tax” — raise related but distinct legal and policy issues.

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