Pasadena, California to tax streaming services

Another US city to implement 'Netflix tax', met with resistance.

Published Mon, Sep 26 2016 12:00 PM CDT   |   Updated Sat, Aug 8 2020 10:29 AM CDT

Pasadena, California is the latest town to impose a streaming tax on its residents. Starting January 1, the 9.4 percent tax will be applied to services like Netflix, HBO Go, and Hulu.

Pasadena, California to tax streaming services |

Five other California cities have already implemented such a tax, and 45 others are on the radar.

There is opposition to the tax, of course, not just on a personal level, but legal as well: the state's leading taxpayer association Howard Jarvis questions the legality of the levy.

"We will be taking a very close look at this," says association president Jon Coupal. "If we determine this is an extension of an existing tax, then under the Constitution, they need voter approval. They can put as much lipstick on this pig as they want, but the pig is still a tax increase."

California's constitution requires resident voting in order to increase taxes.

A lawsuit currently ongoing in Chicago challenging such a tax could have great bearing on the situation in Pasadena, encouraging a class action lawsuit of its own, and possibly a win.

Sean has a background in journalism, and has been using that to write about gaming and tech since 2008 - first for Neoseeker, then Rage3D, and now, TweakTown. As News Editor, Sean's job is to supply regular stories on the latest happenings in the tech world. He also writes tweak guides to help you get the most out of your PC games and hardware.

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