The National Tour Association (NTA) will oppose a New York State sales tax on passenger ground transportation, according to Lisa Simon, president of the 2,700 member NTA. In a letter to New York’s Governor David A. Paterson, Simon urged that the state withdraw the passenger group transportation service sales tax proposal from the 2009-2010 budget.
“NTA is concerned about the proposed sales tax on passenger ground transportation services," Simon said. "This new tax, which would apply to any travel service originating and ending in New York, would negatively impact travel and tourism companies already responsible for bringing valuable tourism revenue to the state. The travel and tourism sector of the economy is already paying its fair share of taxes…and then some. In 2006, travelers to New York paid almost $10 billion in taxes and spent more than $51 billion dollars.
“Placing an additional sales and use tax on New York-based companies is counterproductive and will lead to tours starting outside the state," she continued. "This will lead to a loss in revenue many times more than the funds collected by this new tax. To increase money flowing into state coffers, New York should work with state travel and tourism entities to promote more travel to the state.”
Simon noted that the NTA is the nation’s leading nonprofit trade association focused on the packaged travel industry. “With more than 2,700 members worldwide (including more than 160 in New York state alone), NTA and its member tour operators are responsible for millions of tourism dollars spent in your state.”
In an interview with Travel Agent, Simon pledged that the NTA would closely monitor state and local tax proposals that have the potential to damage the job and revenue producing capabilities of the travel and tourism business.