Kelly William Cobb over at Americans for Tax Reform put up a post outlining just how bad Doyle and the Spendocrats have it for the money of cell-phone users:
- First, they raided the $20 million left over in the now-sunsetted E911 fund. That’s right; instead of you getting that $20 million overpayment to upgrade the 911 system to allow the dispatchers to find you if you call them on a cell phone, they’re going to spend it.
- Then, they created a fresh $0.75/line/month tax on both cell phones and landlines to supposedly fund another upgrade to the 911 system. That would replace an existing $0.16/line/month charge on landlines.
- For the first time, the Universal Service Fund fee of $0.56/line/month will apply to cell phones, to the tune of about $18.8 million/year.
All told, that’s roughly $100 million per year in new cell-phone taxes according to ATR. But wait, it gets worse. First, Rep. Kevin Petersen (R-Waupaca) reports that the Joint Finance Committee raided $11.2 million of the USF fund for public libraries.
Second, forget about that “next-gen” E911 system – Doyle wants to raid that to directly pay for police and fire.
I could bring up what Doyle said in 2003 (again), but like any ‘Rat, he doesn’t care about lying.
Revisions/extensions (12:15 am 5/27/2009) – The Wisconsin State Journal reports (H/T – The MacIver Institute) that the 911 fund diversion would make Wisconsin ineligible for federal grants to help pay for that “next-gen” 911 system, and that including the cell-phone charge as part of that diversion would violate federal law.
Also, since the 911 fund would replace the current $0.16/line/month charge on landlines, that diversion would cause a $7 million local tax increase.
R&E part 2 (10:50 pm 5/27/2009) – I probably should have done this while temporarily at the keyboard this afternoon, but thanks for the link-love, Americans for Tax Reform. Oh well, better late than never.
Meanwhile, WisPolitics is reporting that the rest of the Necro-budget (© Kevin Binversie) will be passed by the Joint Finance Committee tomorrow. Since Democrats control the entire process, what comes out of the JFC is likely what will plop onto Jim Doyle’s desk.
One note; since the Wisconsin line-item veto is still one of the most-powerful in the country, and because Doyle has no respect for the Wisconsin Constitution, it is vital to not only pay attention to the JFC votes, but to the actual verbiage used. Just one item I’m keeping an eye on – the proposed “compromise” from WEAC (the largest teachers’ union) that would delay the elmination of the QEO (the prohibition of work stoppages by teachers as long as a district offered a 3.86% annual total compensation increase) by a year.