Internet Access Taxes Will Harm the Poor and Small Businesses

Published October 3, 2007

If Congress allows a federal ban on Internet access taxes to expire on Nov. 1, Americans should brace for skyrocketing prices to cover taxes on Internet services (“Clash over Internet access tax heats up,” September 27).

State and local governments are lobbying furiously for the power to tax Internet access. Allowing state and local governments to pile on taxes would make use of the Internet more expensive, hurting poor families and small businesses and slowing technological innovation and the expansion of Internet services to rural areas.

Government officials also overlook that while they do not collect taxes on Internet access, they do collect taxes on the increased economic activity and improved business productivity that Internet access has made possible. Internet access taxes would be a drag on economic activity and business productivity.

Steve Stanek ([email protected]) is a research fellow at The Heartland Institute.