Online Marketplace Tax Defeat Is a Win for New York Tech Companies

Julie Samuels, Executive Director

This past weekend, New York’s $153.1 billion budget for the fiscal year was passed with mostly positive outcomes. We were particularly pleased to see the final plan did not include a proposed online marketplace tax that would have been detrimental to the future growth of tech companies in New York.

The proposed online marketplace tax would have required marketplaces such as Etsy, eBay, and Amazon to collect sales tax for transactions between New York customers and out-of-state sellers—the first tax of this kind in the U.S. It would have discouraged new marketplace companies—and tech companies more generally—to base operations in New York, as I wrote recently in an op-ed in the New York Post.

We fought diligently to defeat the tax because it was misguided way to raise revenue—we were particularly concerned about the message it would send to tech companies and entrepreneurs about New York welcoming them here. We know New York is an incredible place to start a technology company, and we’re glad to see this year’s state budget back that up.

In fact, not only did the budget eliminate the marketplace tax, but it importantly also paved the way for ride-sharing companies such as Lyft and Uber to operate upstate, showing a basic understanding of what technology companies and consumers need and want out of New York.

As Tech:NYC approaches its one-year anniversary, we celebrate these wins knowing that we have many important battles ahead in the future. If your company wants to be part of this effort, please get in touch at

Read our full policy brief on the online marketplace tax here.