New Yorkers would pay $3 fee for online orders under new bill

A FedEx truck makes deliveries in Manhattan on September 17, 2020 in New York City.
Photo credit Spencer Platt/Getty Images

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- Online shopping in New York City could soon have an extra fee attached to it—an effort to curb truck traffic and packaging waste and encourage shopping at local businesses.

Brooklyn Assembly member Robert Carroll sees the impact of widespread online shopping in his own apartment building.

“Christmas doesn't come just once a year, it comes every single day,” he said.

He said boxes are piling up from online orders, as are the trucks that deliver them to New Yorkers shopping from home.

“An Amazon van, a UPS truck, a FedEx truck,” he said.

Carroll has filed a bill in Albany looking to charge online shoppers in the five boroughs a $3 fee per a box.

He thinks it will help lead to less congestion from trucks and less waste from boxes and wrapping. He also hopes it will encourage more local shopping.

“It will make people think before they click. It will make companies be smarter about the way they ship things,” Carroll said.

He said the bill is targeting the “mindless consumption” and encouraging a more livable city with less traffic and waste and healthier small businesses.

“Where you’re sitting at work or you’re sitting at home, and suddenly you think, ‘oh, I need to get something.’ You open up your phone, you click and you just buy it,” he said.

Items like food, medicine and diapers would be exempt under the bill.

Carroll said the proceeds would total $1.5 billion a year, with that money going to help the struggling MTA.

“We need to save the MTA. We need to save our city,” he said.