News 12 sources: Possible hike to MTA Payroll Tax not likely to impact LI business owners
News 12 sources say a possible tax increase to businesses will likely not impact Long Island store owners.
The MTA Payroll Tax was first imposed in 2009 to help cut the Metro Transportation Authority's massive deficit.
Businesses in areas served by trains and buses, including Long Island, pay the tax, which Gov. Kathy Hochul wants to raise by nearly 50%.
George Arahovitis and his wife opened Hilltop Restaurant in Syosset around four months ago.
"I can't see us as Nassau and Suffolk residents and business owners contributing to something we don't use," Arahovitis says. "I could see it if I worked in the city, I don't mind to pay my fair share of commuting."
When New York first passed the tax over a decade ago, Democrats controlled the state Legislature. There was so much backlash from Long Island and other suburbs that the following year, Republicans briefly regained control of the state Senate.
Democrats have been pushing hard against the governor's proposal to raise the tax.
According to News 12 sources, the likely outcome is that the increase will be imposed only on businesses in New York City.
A spokesperson for Hochul did not directly answer News 12's question about the MTA payroll tax, but issued a statement saying the governor continues to work with the Legislature to deliver a final budget that meets the needs of all New Yorkers.