The Florida legislature is reconvening June 1 to reconsider consumer-friendly legislation that would give citizens some relief from high taxes on wireless services—and also cable and satellite TV.
Any Floridian with a cell phone has a stake in the outcome. According to a study by the Tax Foundation, Florida citizens pay the fourth highest tax in the country on state-local cell phones.
The bill passed the Florida House by a vote of 112-3 in the regular session, but the House “abruptly ended” the session in April over a Medicaid dispute. Now, there is a second chance.
This is something that hits home for Floridians. An item in the Miami Herald began:
If you think you're forking over too much of your paycheck to pay your cell phone bill, you're not imagining things.
MyWireless.org, which supports the wireless tax reduction, argues (here and here):
It is crucial that the state’s lawmakers resolve their differences on the budget and pass the tax cuts before it is too late.
As we’ve mentioned before, these tax cuts are much needed in Florida. Wireless consumers in the Sunshine State currently pay over 22 percent in federal, state and local taxes on their monthly wireless bills, which is the 4th highest wireless tax rate in the country and three times higher than the general sales tax of other goods and services in the state.
CST reduction should be something everyone can agree on during the special session. The proposal as outlined in HB7141 and SB110 would save Floridians an estimated $470 million annually in wireless and TV taxes, which amounts to an annual consumer savings of $43 on every $100 spent on monthly wireless and TV services.