US consumers dodge internet tax for another year



Most Americans’ broadband bills will be free of state taxes until October of 2015 or later, thanks to a decision by Congress to use a major budget bill as a means to extend a current moratorium on internet access taxes.

The move reflects an ongoing policy decision by lawmakers to bar states from imposing broadband taxes similar to the ones that consumers see on their phone bill bills. While the tax ban is broadly popular, its future was up in the air for most of 2014 as a result of lawmakers’ attempts to tie it to an unrelated internet tax issue: whether online retailers should have to collect out-of-state sales taxes.

A proposed law to require online sales tax collection, which brick-and-mortar retailers say is necessary to create a level playing field, collapsed in November. As a result, it was for a while unclear if Senate Democrats would agree to extend the internet access tax ban — now, as National Journal and others have reported, the…

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