- (Washington, DC) -- A bill to prevent
families and businesses from having to pay per-minute access charges on
phone calls placed to Internet service providers has been introduced in
the House of Representatives with the support of Congressman Kolbe.
- HR1291, the Internet Access Charge Prohibition
Act of 1999 was introduced on March 25th by Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) and
has more than 60 bipartisan cosponsors including Congressman Kolbe.
- Under an FCC proposal, Internet services
could be exempted from telephone company policies that charge a flat-fee
for unlimited calling time. Despite an initial FCC ruling that calls to
Internet providers are not subject to interstate tolls, "the door
is very much open" to implementation of taxes, the cosponsors said.
- "The Internet is an efficient, but
still nascent technology and any such taxation would be unjust," the
- Were the FCC to apply interstate access
charges to providers of Internet services, "families could wind up
paying hundreds of dollars in taxes on long-distance calls every year.
Calls to Internet providers are local calls and they should remain classified
that way. "