That wireless 911 tax

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A few questions I haven't seen answered anywhere about the 50 cent per month per wireless phone tax on Tuesday's ballot, which is supposed to pay for a 911 system that can pinpoint the location of an emergency call made from a wireless phone:

Who will be collecting these funds?

How much will the new 911 equipment cost?

How much are the estimated annual operating costs?

How much money is the tax expected to raise?

How will any surplus money be spent?

What funds will be used to compensate for any shortfalls?

Anyone know?

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» VOTE "NO" ON THE 911 CELL PHONE TAX from HFFZ.org News

EDITORIAL NOTE BY JOHN S. DENNEY: I will be voting "No" on the December 13th ballot measure related to whether or not to add a tax of $ .50 per month per cell phone number to provide a means to... Read More

7 Comments

INCOG gets the money; I believe that is by state law. My question is how did they determine the 50-cent price tag? The million-dollar question is how will the surplus money will be spent. This technology can only become cheaper to operate. That, plus the proliferation of mobile phones, will only serve to bring in more money than is needed.

Willy said:

Mike,

I always consider it an honor when I'm thinking the same thoughts you are and posting them at the same time as well. In my post(linked above) the websites 911saveslives.org & the Tulsa Chambered website don't cough up any figures for this implementation. They want us voting for a tax increase in which no figures have been made available. Which is why I'm voting NO.

Jeff Shaw Author Profile Page said:

Chalk up another NO. If there is no way to tell me how my money is going to be spent, the vote is NO. Here is the lamest argument of all: "Well, its just 50c a month."

It's sort of like a car salesman asking you how much you want your car payments to be, without offering you the number on the final cost of the vehicle.

Joseph Wallis said:

Is there any way opposition can get on the TV news? All the news channels I have seen present pieces that I view are slanted to the yes side. I would get on TV IMMEDIATELY if given the opportunity if given the chance to state my stance. It doesn't take an "expert" to figure out that ALL of the taxes coming up tomorrow are WRONG!

Mel said:

I don't have anything to back this up, but I believe the carriers have been collecting for a while to cover their end, and that localities around the country have had Federal funds allocated in various amounts ... that have been spent on "other things" when they've hit budget shortfalls.

Several bills introduced last year in the Senate and House would give matching grants to state and local governments for E911. The bills also would require states to stop spending money raised for E911 for other purposes ... One state reported diverting more than $40 million in E911 funds and said another $25 million would be taken in 2004. Another state’s legislature froze E911 funds.

www.gcn.com/23_4/tech-report/24978-1.html

I dunno - have we already paid for it and are being asked to pay for it again??

Bob said:

There are many unanswered questions concerning this new Tax.

For instance, older phones lack the Global Positioning System chip to enable 24x7 Government tracking of the cell phone user.

So, does that mean that older phones without GPS will be untraceable? Or, does it mean that the older cell phones will be disabled by the cell phone carriers, in order to force users to the newer (and hence traceable) phones.

Joseph Wallis said:

In answer to the cell phone question....many carriers are not allowing these non GPS phones to be activated any longer, and they aren't replacing them with the same model if they break. Every carrier has to ensure the government that a certain percentage (like 97%) is e911 capable handsets.

Some carriers like Alltel have a subsidy program to get those phones off the street.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on December 11, 2005 10:58 PM.

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