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March 28, 2019 | Illinois Ponders Taxing Internet Streaming Services and Gas Tax Hikes of $0.19

Mike 'Mish' Shedlock

Mike Shedlock / Mish is a registered investment advisor representative for SitkaPacific Capital Management. Sitka Pacific is an asset management firm whose goal is strong performance and low volatility, regardless of market direction.
Illinois seems desperate to drive away every able body citizen who can possibly leave.

Illinois is considering several bills that will without a doubt drive more businesses and individuals out of the state. One of them is likely illegal.

Gas Tax Hikes

Please consider Bill Seeks to Increase Illinois’ Gas Tax to Fund Road Repair.

Illinois lawmakers are considering raising the state’s gas tax by 19 cents a gallon and hiking vehicle fees to pay for transportation infrastructure repairs.

Legislation introduced last week proposes the state’s first gas tax increase since 1990 and could raise an additional $2 billion in revenue each year, the Chicago Tribune reported. But it also would hike the electric-vehicle fee from $17.50 to $148, and increase truck registration fees by $100.

The fees for driver’s licenses would double under the proposal, from $30 to $60, while passenger vehicle registration would increase from $98 to $148.

Where Would the Money Go (Part 1)

“Doubling the state gas tax would bring Illinois to the second-highest overall gas tax burden in the nation, notes the Illinois Policy Institute.

Supposedly these tax hikes would go for road repairs. Perhaps about 10% would. The rest would go to bail out bankrupt Illinois’ pension plans.

Netflix Tax


House Bill 3359 would create the “Video Service Tax Modernization Act” and “Entertainment Tax Fairness Act,” which would impose new taxes on satellite and video streaming service providers and subscribers. Users of those services would pay a 1 percent tax “for the privilege to witness, view, or otherwise enjoy the entertainment,” while companies would pay a 5 percent tax on their gross revenues.

Chicago currently stretches the definition of its 9 percent citywide “amusement tax” to include online streaming services such as Netflix and Spotify, as well as Playstation rentals.

The legality of Chicago’s “Netflix tax” is dubious. The Liberty Justice Center, the Illinois Policy Institute’s litigation partner, sued the city on behalf of streaming service customers in 2015, after the expansion of the tax to online services went into effect. The city tax was previously applied only to ticketed live entertainment performances and events.

The Center argued expanding the tax to online services violates the 1998 Internet Tax Freedom Act, a federal law. The Act prohibits taxes that discriminate against electronic commerce levied by any government body, including state governments, suggesting Illinois could expose itself to similar legal risks should HB 3359 become law.

Where Would the Money Go (Part 2)

This tax hike is even easier to state. No matter what anyone says, 100% of this money would be diverted to bail out bankrupt Illinois’ pension plans.

Constitutional Amendment

These hikes are on top of a major Constitutional Amendment change to make the Illinois state income tax “Progressive”. Rest assured it will dramatically increase taxes on the middle class no matter what these parasites say.

Get the Hell Out

I repeat my caution of last week: An Illinois’ Demographic Collapse Is on the Horizon.

Get Out As Soon As You Can!

Yes, we live in Illinois. I expect to be out of this hell hole within 18 months. Plans are underway.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

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March 28th, 2019

Posted In: Mish Talk

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