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Texas Cell Phone Taxes Ranked 10th Highest

Texas ranked as the 10th highest state in the list of cell phone taxes
Image by KUT News
Texas ranked as the 10th highest state in the list of cell phone taxes

Texas consumers face the 10th highest cell phone rate in U.S., according to a new study from the Tax Foundation.

Each state can levy taxes on cell phone service as either a percentage or as a flat rate. Texans pay an average state-local tax rate of 12.43 percent on their bills. The average U.S. consumer pays 16.26 percent of taxes and fees. Nebraska tops the list, followed by Washington and New York.  Oregon pays the lowest state-local taxes

The number of U.S. cell phone users has grown from 55 million in 1997 to 292 million in 2010. The state and local governments have also accompanied this trend with higher taxes.

The study says that states use the fees and taxes to raise revenue in a relatively hidden way. Texas even sued Sprint because the company listed a state tax as a line-item in its bill, rather than hiding it from customers.


--Reported by Ioli Campos

Ian Crawford joined KUT as News Editor in 2008, after spending over four years as a reporter/anchor at KLBJ Radio in Austin. He began his broadcasting career while still in high school in Southern Oregon. During high school and college at the University of Oregon, he worked at times as a reporter, news anchor, sports play-by-play reporter, music host and commercial producer before moving to Texas in 2003.