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GNU is Not Unix

NY Bill Proposes Tax Credit for Open Source Developers 111

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Assemblymen Jonathan Bing and Micah Kellner, along with a number of co-sponsors, have introduced proposed legislation in New York State which would grant a tax credit to individuals acting as volunteers who develop open source programs. The idea of the credit is to ensure that volunteer developers, who could not otherwise deduct their expenses because they are not part of a 'business,' should nevertheless be able to receive a tax benefit for their contribution. The credit would be for 20% of the expenses incurred, up to $200. The preamble to the bill notes that the New York State Assembly itself currently uses 'Open Source programs such as Mozilla for email, Firefox for web browsing, and WebCal for electronic calendars,' and that these programs have led to significant cost savings to taxpayers. The preamble also cited a 2006 report authored by John Irons and Carl Malamud from the Center for American Progress detailing how Open Source software enhances a broader dissemination of knowledge and ideas."
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NY Bill Proposes Tax Credit for Open Source Developers

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  • By the way, for those of you anxious to know the background of how an Assemblyman named Jonathan Bing got into this issue, I should mention that

    (a) the guy with the idea behind this bill was "open government", "open access to court records", "open source", "open everything" activist Carl Malamud [americanprogress.org], who was most recently in the news when Congressmen and Senators started picking up his thread about making PACER -- i.e. court records -- free (as in beer); and

    (b) the guy who helped usher this through, and put together the details, and get the Assemblymen to put their backs behind this, in the halls of government, is a very dynamic young geek and Slashdotter named Benjamin Kallos (like myself a Bronx High School of Science grad) who until recently was working for Assemblyman Bing but is now running for City Council [kallosforcouncil.com] in Manhattan.

As of next Tuesday, C will be flushed in favor of COBOL. Please update your programs.