Proposal would charge $3 for package delivery in NYC to help fund MTA

NEW YORK (WABC) -- A controversial proposal to help solve NYC's multi-billion dollar budget problem would add $3 to every non-essential package delivered in the city.

The money from the tax would go into bailing out the MTA, which desperately needs $12 billion.

The legislation was introduced by Brooklyn Assemblyman Robert Carroll earlier this year.

The surcharge would apply to non-essential packages ordered online for delivery, with the exception of those containing food or medicine.

An estimated 1.8 million packages are delivered every day in NYC. The surcharge would raise more than a billion dollars a year for the MTA, which under its proposed budget, may be forced to cut service between 40-50%.

Trying to avoid the surcharge would reap benefits too, Carroll said: There would be fewer trucks on the road and less waste if internet companies consolidated orders into fewer boxes.

But most importantly, he says it could encourage New Yorkers to shop locally.

Critics have likened the proposal to a tax on the poor and working class.

Tim Minton, MTA Spokesman, released the following statement:

"We have been clear only $12 billion in federal relief can prevent drastic service cuts, layoffs and gutting our historic capital plan that would devastate our colleagues and customers. While the MTA welcomes creative solutions and any new revenue, the proposal is subject to the state legislative process and cannot itself solve the problem, which is why we urge continued advocacy in Washington."

Carrol plans to reintroduce the proposal in the new year.

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