Opening up your mobile phone bill can sometimes cause hair loss – says a recent report. No, not really, but what can happen is that you see a new state excise or sales tax that wasn’t there the month before. No one really understands what these taxes are for, but there is currently a bill in Congress that could freeze new taxes for 4 years.
A letter written by the National Taxpayers Union claims that between 2003 and 2007 cell phone taxes have increased four times faster than another good and service. In the letter the group stated, “While family members are forced into paying more money, out of pocket, to communicate with one another, these predatory taxes are often squandered on projects that have little to do with improving the communications network.”
The bill is a bi-partisan effort that made it through the House Judiciary subcommittee and is called the Cell Tax Fairness Act of 2009, originally introduced by Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) and Trent Franks (R-AZ).
The hope of the bill it not to do away with current taxes, but to stabilize the taxation for a while, banning new taxes for four years, and only on the state level. The bill is not designed to take revenue that states are already collecting, simply to prevent further taxes from being put in place.
Much of the wireless community supports the new bill and urges Congress to pass it before they recess for elections, so that Congress can protect consumers from new burdens. The wireless industry also believes that this could encourage innovation in broadband networks.
Consumers hope that the bill will be passed in a prompt manner to prevent more taxes from appearing on their cell phone bills without knowing what they are helping to fund or where they came from, while hair restoration clinics everywhere are holding their breath.