High Cell Phone Taxes Plague NYC
(Crain’s) — Cell phone taxes and fees in New York are third highest in the country, adding 22.8% to users’ bills, according to a new study. State and local taxes combine for an average surcharge of 17.8%, with the remaining 5% coming from federally imposed fees, according to the analysis by the Tax Foundation. The report did not estimate the total amount in surcharges on wireless service that New Yorkers pay each year, but a Crain’s New York Businessstory in 2006 estimated it to be $1.5 billion. It has undoubtedly risen since then as cell phone use has increased. Only Nebraska and Washington state have higher cell phone taxes than New York. It is possible for New Yorkers to reduce their taxes by registering their phones in low-tax states such as Idaho, Nevada or Oregon, where cell surcharges are about 2%, not including the federal component.