AUGUSTA, Maine, April 28, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- After Governor Paul LePage issued a veto of a bill designed to protect Maine telecommunications consumers from as much as $67 million in new annual fees, MyWireless.org is calling on the Maine Legislature to override the veto and pass LD 1479.
"We're disappointed Governor LePage vetoed a bill that could prevent a massive and unfair phone tax increase on Maine consumers," said Amy McLean, director of advocacy communications for MyWireless.org. "Although we understand the Governor doesn't necessarily support increases in phone taxes, the reality is that the Maine Public Utilities Commission currently believes it has the authority to raise fees on consumers, and LD 1479 would be an effective tool for the Legislature to prevent millions of dollars of new phone taxes from going into effect this fall."
If the legislation is not passed this year, Maine consumers could be faced with paying as much as $60 per year for every wireless or landline phone in their household, which would all go to subsidize one company - FairPoint Maine. This adds up to around $300 for a family with four cell phones and a landline.
"The Legislature showed strong, bipartisan support in passing LD 1479. We hope they will come together again to override this veto so we can get to work on examining the issues raised by the Governor without leaving consumers vulnerable to a huge hit to their pocketbooks in the meantime. In fact, passing LD 1479 is the only way to assure that the policy concerns raised by the Governor can be addressed without new taxes going into effect this fall," said McLean.
Over the past few months, Mainers sent thousands of e-mails to their elected officials opposing this unfair tax hike. The Maine Legislature listened and passed LD 1479, with strong bipartisan support, which would safeguard against any immediate phone tax increases. The measure was subsequently vetoed by Governor LePage and on May 1, the Maine Legislature will consider overriding the Governor's veto.
Maine citizens who would like to learn more about this issue and take action can go to: http://act.mywireless.org/page/speakout/maine-override-the-veto-and-stop-new-phone-taxes.
MyWireless.org® is a nonpartisan, non-profit national advocacy organization made up of U.S. wireless consumers, businesses and community leaders and supports reasonable, pro-consumer and pro-taxpayer wireless policies. MyWireless.org is a project of CTIA-The Wireless Association®. For more information, visit: http://www.mywireless.org/2013/06/new-survey-shows-large-majority-of-mainers-against-proposed-phone-tax-increase/