The Telephone Excise Tax is a great lesson we should teach all of our children about; we should also instruct all voters about this tax as well...
The Telephone Excise Tax was first instituted in 1898 to help fund The Spanish American War. The tax was a "temporary tax." It was a luxury tax designed to specifically tax the wealthy. The tax ran from 1898 - 1901.
The Telephone Excise Tax was re-instituted in 1917 to help fund World War One. It ran again from 1917 - 1924.
The Telephone Excise Tax was re-instituted a third time in 1932. In has been in effect ever since.
The Telephone Tax was originally portrayed as both a "Temporary Tax" and as a "luxury" tax.
We have been paying this "temporary tax" since continuously since 1932 and the rate keeps increasing. Telephones are no longer a luxury...
Here is a copy of my phone bill from January:
Residence Line $17.56
Voice Mail $6.95
Distinctive Ring (For fax) $4.25
Here is a breakdown of the taxes:
Telecommunications Service Charge $.03
Federal Universal Service Fee $.67
Interstate Access Charge $6.5
State Tax at 6% $1.7
Federal Excise Tax at 3% $.87
My total bill was $39.23, of that $10.47 was paid in various taxes. Almost 27% of my total phone bill was paid in taxes!
Please take the time to check out your phone bill. Let me know what you think!