“I guess the yacht lobby is stronger than people thought,” or at least that’s the belief of state legislator, Mike Murphy, a spokesman for the Senate’s Democratic conference, as reported in the New York Daily News.

The soon-to-be implemented New York state budget has included a sales tax cap of $230,000 on yacht purchases, which has been identified by Governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo as a potentially lucrative economic driver for the state.

Any yacht, defined in the budget as ‘every description of watercraft, other than a seaplane, used or capable of being used as a means of transportation on water, costing over $230,000 would be taxed at the same rate as one below that threshold, at current rates akin to $9,200.

Gov. Cuomo is a Democrat, which may raise the eyebrows of some who believe this is simply a ‘tax-break for the rich’. But the intention, he insists, is to incentivise the swathes of UHNWIs who reside in the area to buy their yachts, use their yachts and service their yachts within the jurisdiction.

This is the interpretation of Strong’s Marine president, Jeff Strong, when speaking to the New York Times (NYT). “It is a big deal because we have so many people with expensive boats that use them in New York and Florida,” Strong told NYT. “Right now they buy the boats and pay the tax in Florida, and then bring them up here.”

SuperyachtNews.com contacted a number of industry stakeholders, but due to the political nature of the legislation, nobody was keen to comment. It was widely agreed however, that this would be a positive development for the industry on the East Coast.

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