ACTION ALERT: Stop the CPUC on Their “TEXT Tax”

Posted December 4th, 2018 | Status:

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The California Public Utilities Commission, under the leadership of Commissioner Peterman, recently proposed a California-only “text tax”. The CPUC is considering the placement of text messaging under Public Purpose Program surcharges and user fees. These increased charges would act as a de-facto tax, raising the cost for wireless consumers including the many businesses that utilize these forms of informational exchange.

BizFed is committed to lifting 1 Million Angelenos out of poverty in the next 10 years. This action by the CPUC would drive more LA County residents into poverty by both raising wireless bills and increasing the cost of business. We are requesting that you ask the CPUC to not put additional hardship on the most vulnerable.

The following is the direct scope of work determined by Commissioner Peterman and the CPUC:

  1. Whether the Commission may impose user fees on text messaging under the Commission’s existing user fee collection mechanism;
  2. Whether the Commission may impose surcharges and user fees on text messaging under state law;
  3. Whether the Commission may impose surcharges and user fees on text messaging under federal law; including §§ 253(b) and 254(f) of the Act, and current FCC regulations.

This rulemaking motion would be the first step toward a “text tax”, with additional mechanisms identified if passed. We hope to stop this now before it moves any further, but we will have to be vigilant in continuing the fight if it goes forward.

You must submit letters by Friday December 7th
Here are instructions to submit a letter from your organization:

  1. Insert e-mail Subject Line: Public Comments re: OIR 17-06-023
  2. Insert full name, organization name and signature (see highlighted in yellow at bottom of the letter)
  3. Email the signed letter to: public.advisor@cpuc.ca.gov
  4. Letter can be sent in the body of the email or attached as a PDF.

For your information, here is the BizFed Letter and a copy of the rulemaking motion.

Tracy Hernandez

 

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