Home > posts > Texas Legislature Considers New Taxes On… Thin Air?
April 5th, 2011 3:48 pm
Texas Legislature Considers New Taxes On… Thin Air?
Posted by Print

Two bills before the Texas legislature, H.B. 259 and H.B. 3675, propose new and unwarranted taxes on satellite television providers.  This period of high unemployment and economic uncertainty is no time to be raising taxes in the first place.  But here’s the kicker:  those two bills would essentially tax thin air.

H.B. 259 and H.B. 3675 would impose taxes on something satellite television providers don’t even use – the physical public right of way.  Obviously, reasonable people could understand why entities that actually use the public right of way under city streets or along physical power lines must help maintain those rights of way.  Since satellite video doesn’t even traverse any physical right of way, however, H.B. 259 and H.B. 3675 constitute a tax on thin air.  Moreover, Texas already taxes video services, so imposing yet another entirely new tax upon physical rights of way that satellite providers don’t even use makes these two bills even more manifestly unfair.  Additionally, it is estimated that only 10% of right of way taxes actually go to maintenance, with 90% of collected revenues diverted to general city funds.  In other words, these two proposed bills are a transparent money grab.

We at CFIF have therefore sent a letter of to the House State Affairs Committee to assert our opposition on behalf of 17,000 activists and supporters in the state of Texas.  But you can also help by contacting them as well via this link

Make it clear to these legislators that now is not the time to raise taxes, especially when what’s being taxed is nothing more than thin air.

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