Airbnb pledges $10 million to New York charities

Airbnb this morning announced the launch of A Fair Share. The initiative promises to donate $10 million to seven organizations, including The New York Immigration Coalition, New York Mortgage Coalition, New York State Rural Housing Coalition Inc., Win, GMHC, CSNYC and Abyssinian Development Corporation.

It’s not all just a goodwill gesture, however. As The New York Times notes, the generosity comes as the popular subletting service is looking to raise the profile of NY Assembly Bill A7520, which would go a ways toward helping legitimize the service within the confines of the country’s largest metropolitan area.

“We wanted to make the point of what the impact of tax collection and remittances would be if we were able to collect on behalf of our community here,” Airbnb public policy manager Josh Meltzer told the paper.

The service handily points out that the donation would be a fraction of the $100 million in tax revenues that could be raised for the state, should the bill go through. But Airbnb has proven unpopular among many tenants for the impacts it has on neighborhoods.

Earlier this month, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signed a bill aimed at curbing illegal short term rentals, requiring services like Airbnb to include addresses and names of hosts in listings. City Council, meanwhile, also recently struck a blow to ride hailing services like Uber and Lyft by capping the issue of new licenses.

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