Kansas Governor Wants to Tax Your Netflix & Online Shopping In Midst of Pandemic

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Posted by Sheridan Nolen on Monday, January 25th, 2021, 6:21 PM PERMALINK

Instead of making it easier for millions of Kansans to make ends meet and recover from the pandemic, Gov. Laura Kelly is pushing a tax-and-spend agenda during the pandemic-induced recession in her new proposed budget

Nearly 2 million Kansans use digital streaming services. If her proposed budget is passed, the state’s sales tax will be applied to digital products and streaming services. In other words, every time a person purchases a Netflix, Spotify, or Hulu subscription, a sales tax would be applied to that transaction. If someone were to purchase a digital book, video game, smartphone application, or magazine download, it would be taxed as well.  

Gov. Kelly’s budget also codifies an Internet Sales Tax that she was previously pushing to collect unconstitutionally (using legislation that did not comply with the Supreme Court’s Wayfair v. South Dakota decision).

Kansas currently has the 8th highest combined state and average local sales tax rate in the country, sitting at 8.69%.    

Kelly is pushing for tax hikes because she wants to significantly increase spending to a record $7.9 billion, and increase pension debt. She is doing all of this despite the fact Kansans are struggling with a weak economy and uncertainty due to the pandemic. 

A “Netflix tax” would affect millions of taxpayers in Kansas, considering virtually everyone uses digital products and streaming services – especially during the pandemic. While countless Kansans have been forced to spend more time at home, they have looked to digital streaming services and other digital products as a source of entertainment.  

Instead of looking for ways to boost Kansas’ economy during the recession by cutting taxes and reducing government spending, Gov. Kelly wants to impose a sales tax that capitalizes on Kansans just trying to stay safe at home through the pandemic.  

Photo Credit: Stock Catalog

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