Californians To Be Taxed More On All Phone Lines

This story slipped by me last week but it’s not to late to decry California election Proposition 67, which would slap an unfair 3% tax on all phone lines, fixed or mobile. Such a tax is expected to garner $500M dollars from California consumers, and Techdirt would hope that the revenues be spent in some short-term project related to the phone system, like an E911 overhaul or such…however, Proposition 67 strangely suggests the appropriation pay for health care, with no end to the fees ever!! “Why a phone tax? Supporters of Proposition 67 contend, with straight faces, that the connection is logical: a phone is used to call 911 in an emergency.” What a boatload of BS. Their argument is that: since people rely on telcos to provide 911 service (which the telcos are forced to provide and fund with a surcharge), the telcos should also pay for the resulting health services for uninsured persons? And they call that logical? Make no mistake, this is a tax on telcos because it raises the true price of their service. Customers will have the pleasure of paying it, and will also suffer the angst caused “bill-shock”. Health care may need funding, but if the state government needs to raise funds to pay health expenses, it should raise the darned state income tax rate and suffer the political consequences, not hide the tax hike in fees slapped on phone service or any other service. Why is it that some governments have somehow decided the telcos are responsible for saving us in emergencies (911, e911), and now to mend us when we’re ill. It’s not political, but merely common sense for us to recommend California NO on 67.

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