The shadow tax of Conegliano
In 2015, Conegliano, an Italian town in Veneto, introduced a tax on shadows. Business owners whose signs create a shadow on public property or walkways now pay an annual shadow tax. The tax is EUR 8.40 per square meter, and the fee is calculated based on the size of the shadow created. For the average shop owner, the charge works out at EUR 100 per year.
Small business owners are angry about the tax, and many are refusing to pay it. The store owners complain that they are already paying other charges on the shade created by their awnings or for putting tables or a chair outside their shop.
Under a 1993 law, the whole of Italy could be subject to the shadow tax. But to date, only Conegliano has chosen to impose the shadow tax on its small business owners.
"You’d be stupid not to try to cut your tax bill and those that don’t are stupid in business"
- Bono: U2