The Senate passed a bill yesterday to extend a ban on Internet access taxes for 7 years; it will have to be reconciled with a House bill—which has a 4-year lifespan—and signed into law by next Thursday to beat the current law’s expiration date. The bill was a compromise between those seeking a permanent ban and those looking to match the House’s shorter moratorium, ComputerWorld reports.
A permanent ban on state and local access taxes, supporters say, would encourage greater adoption of broadband services, fueling the economy. Opponents argue governments could raise significant funds from Web taxes. Special provisions of the Senate bill also protect e-mails and instant messages from tariffs.