Could you soon have to pay sales taxes on streaming services like Netflix?

Posted at 4:52 PM, Nov 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-27 16:52:59-05

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - Two Hampton Roads cities and the Virginia Municipal League have asked the General Assembly to tax streaming services like Spotify or Netflix.

Hampton and Newport News included the idea in their annual priorities for the General Assembly.

Right now, Virginia's Communication Sales and Use Tax does not include audio and video streaming services, as well as prepaid calling services. By comparison, people with cable have to pay the tax. This would include services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and Spotify.

The tax is generating less revenue for the state than it once did, partly because technology is changing, according to James Regimbal, Fiscal Policy Consultant for the Virginia Municipal League.

A check of the state legislature's website appears to show no bills have been introduced so far to tackle the issue, but the session doesn't begin until January.