Wisconsin state senator Jon Erpenbach wants to place a 1 percent tax on videogame sales to pay for rehabilitation programs for 17-year-old non-violent offenders.
According to Erpenbach the bill’s intention is not to dissuade gamers, but to keep 17-year-old non-violent offenders from being tried as adults in Wisconsin. Erpenbach believes that the revenues gained from placing a 1 percent tax on game sales would help cover the costs of moving them back into the juvenile system.
“The idea being that this is kind of a kids-kids thing, in other words, if we’re going to do this for kids maybe this would be a good way to go about it. And if it’s not the best way, I’m open to any other way,” he said.
Wisconsin state records show that of the approximately 30,000 17-year-olds arrested each year, 98 percent are charged with minor offenses.
Lawmakers are unsure of how much money the tax would generate.