CLOSINGS: View Closings

California abandons plan to tax text messages

Article Image

California regulators no longer plan to tax text messages.The California Public Utilities Commission said a new FCC ruling prevented the state from le...

Posted: Dec. 17, 2018 7:26 AM

California regulators no longer plan to tax text messages.

The California Public Utilities Commission said a new FCC ruling prevented the state from levying a tax on text plans. The state hoped to add new monthly fees onto wireless customers' bills to increase funds for programs that bring connectivity to underserved residents. Regulators were scheduled to vote on the measure on January 10, 2019.

The FCC put the text tax's future in doubt when it issued a new rule on December 12 determining text messages constitute an "information service" — not a "telecommunications service." CPUC commissioner Carla Peterman withdrew the text tax propsal "in light of the FCC's action."

Proponents of the FCC's new rule say it will give carriers the ability to crack down on spam messages, and critics say it could lead to carriers censoring messages. The FCC did not immediately respond to a request for comment Sunday.

The CPUC's proposed text tax faced strong opposition from industry trade groups, including CTIA, which represents AT&T Mobility, Sprint, and T-Mobile. (AT&T is the parent company of CNN.)

The industry group said the CPUC proposal would have created inequity "between wireless carriers and other providers of messaging services," such as WhatsApp, iMessage and Skype. In a legal filing, CTIA called the text tax plan "illogical, anticompetitive, and harmful to consumers."

CTIA did not immediately respond to a request for comment Sunday.

Article Comments

Saint Joseph
Clear
11° wxIcon
Hi: 25° Lo: 14°
Feels Like: 11°
Maryville
Broken Clouds
21° wxIcon
Hi: 23° Lo: 18°
Feels Like: 13°
Savannah
Clear
11° wxIcon
Hi: 24° Lo: 17°
Feels Like: 11°
Cameron
Clear
18° wxIcon
Hi: 24° Lo: 15°
Feels Like: 6°
Fairfax
Clear
14° wxIcon
Hi: 24° Lo: 15°
Feels Like: 4°
There is the return of some clouds for your Wednesday night into Thursday. Temperatures will be on the decline the rest of the workweek as they are staying below average in the middle to upper 20s. Bitter cold air will move in by Thursday night into Friday morning with overnight lows near below zero.
KQTV Radar
KQTV Temperatures
KQTV Alerts

Community Events