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US Senator Threatens To Block Spending Bill Over Net Access Tax Provision

by Glen Shapiro, LawAndTax-News.com, New York

25 November 2003


Senator Thomas Carper, (D-Delaware) announced on Thursday that he intends to block the year-end spending bill in the Senate if a controversial internet access tax moratorium sponsored by Senators Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) and George Allen (R-Virginia) is tacked onto it.

"If we end up with just an awful...provision I would certainly object to bringing the omnibus spending bill to the floor and I suspect others will join me," he told reporters last week.

The proposed legislation, a version of which has already been passed by the House of Representatives, extends the definition of internet access contained in the expired temporary moratorium to include DSL and high-speed cable access. It also seeks to eliminate access taxes which were put in place by some states prior to the 1998 enactment of the temporary ban.

However, state authorities have argued that the bill is so broadly worded that they may be prevented from collecting as much as $9 billion annually in other taxes on the telecommunications industry as more services migrate online.


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