Industry alliance seeks FCC ruling on proposed CRIM tax on island telecom firms
By The Star Staff
Felipe Hernández, who heads the Puerto Rican Telecommunications Alliance, asked Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai on Thursday to investigate the legality of Senate Bill 1333, which would impose taxes on telecommunications companies for the Municipal Revenue Collections Center (CRIM by its Spanish acronym).
In the opinion of the members of the Alliance, such a tax would not only be detrimental to the stability of the industry, but goes against the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) and the objective of promoting the universal availability of high-speed internet access that is affordable and reliable for all citizens.
“Senate Bill 1333 violates [the ITFA], establishing the imposition of a property tax for each line on the internet,” Hernández said in a written statement. “This … could represent an increase in current tax burdens of up to 1,000 percent, leading many of the industry’s small and medium-sized businesses to bankruptcy, and would increase consumer