Quote:>> why shouldn't you pay similar taxes on similar service?
>Tough to agree with you. Many of the extra charges, e.g. USF, Etrust,
>911, functionally benefit the ILEC's in one form or another. They control
>the structures that collect, regulate and (for the most part) receive
>all these funds.
I'm looking at my phone bills. On my Vonage bill, there is 3% Federal
excise tax. On my non-Bell ILEC bill there's a 35 cent 911 surcharge,
a $6 access charge, a 55 cent universal service charge, 8% state+local
sales tax, 3% state surcharge, and the 3% FET. I think we can ignore
the access charge, since we know it's just part of the monthly line
charge under a misleading name. The 911 surcharge goes to the county
to pay for the people who answer 911, the sales tax and surcharge go
to the state and county, and the FET pays for the Spanish American
War. The only one I see that's fed back to the ILECs is the universal
service fee, and I was under the impression that CLECs could get in on
that if they were willing to accept ILEC style universal service
Vonage doesn't pay the 911 charge nor the 11% state+local tax, neither
of which benefits the ILEC, so in my case it's 55 cents for the ILEC,
$2.35 for the government. That's where I have sympathy for the ILEC's
position, and that's the bulk of the taxes.
John R. Levine, IECC, POB 727, Trumansburg NY 14886 +1 607 330 5711
Member, Provisional board, Coalition Against Unsolicited Commercial E-mail