AN ACT PROVIDING THAT INTERCONNECTED VOIP SERVICE PROVIDERS SHALL REMIT THE TELECOMMUNICATIONS RELAY SERVICE SURCHARGE TO THE STATE TREASURER, ALLOWING LOCAL EXCHANGE, CMRS, AND VOIP PROVIDERS TO CHOOSE WHETHER TO INCLUDE THE SURCHARGE ON CUSTOMERS' BILLS, DIRECTING ALL PROVIDERS TO REMIT THE FEE TO THE STATE TREASURER, ALLOWING ALL PROVIDERS TO DEDUCT A ONE PERCENT ADMINISTRATIVE FEE FROM THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF SURCHARGE REVENUE, AND CLARIFYING THE SALES TAX TREATMENT OF CERTAIN CHARGES RELATED TO TELECOMMUNICATIONS RELAY SERVICE.
House committee substitute makes the following changes to the 1st edition.
Changes the long title.
Amends GS 62-157 (Telecommunication relay service), providing two new terms and definitions: prepaid wireless telecommunications service and voice communications service connection.
Amends GS 62-157(a2), providing specified providers will submit a monthly relay service surcharge, set by the Utilities Commission (Commission), to the State Treasurer. The surcharge will be used to fund a statewide telecommunications relay service by which hearing-impaired, speech-impaired, or vision-impaired individuals can communicate with others by voice communication (telecommunications relay service). The surcharge is payable by the subscriber to the voice communications service provider and can be assessed and stated as a separate charge. The surcharge is not includable in the gross receipts subject to sales tax under GS 105-164.4C. Deletes previously proposed language in (a2).
Amends GS 62-157(b), providing that the Commission will require (was, allow) local service providers to remit (was, impose) a monthly surcharge on all residential and business local exchange access facilities to fund the telecommunications relay service to the State Treasurer. Deletes language providing that the revenue raised pursuant to the surcharges are not includable in gross receipts of the franchise tax under GS 105-120, or sales tax, GS 105-164.4.
Amends GS 62-157(c), clarifying that if the surcharge is assessed separately on customer bills, then the surcharge must be identified as a special surcharge for the provision of a telecommunications relay service.
Amends GS 62-157(d), providing that the local service providers must remit the surcharge and deposit the moneys collected with the State Treasurer (previous edition provided that the providers could collect the surcharge from their customers and whether collected from customers or not, the providers were required to remit an equivalent amount of the surcharge to the State Treasurer).
Deletes changes made to GS 62-157(d1).
Amends GS 62-157(f), adding language that specifies that the long distance revenues collected under this subsection are not includable in the gross receipts to the sales tax levied under GS 105-164.4C.
Amends GS 62-157(i), providing that a CMRS provider, other than prepaid wireless service providers, must remit the telecommunications relay surcharge for each voice communications service connection. Clarifies that the CMRS provider will remit the surcharge collected to the State Treasurer, then to be deposited in the specified special account. Deletes changes to the subsection from the previous edition. Makes clarifying and technical changes.
Amends GS 62-157(j), making clarifying and conforming changes and also requires the VoIP provider to remit surcharge for each voice service connection.
Amends GS 105-164.13(54), regarding telecommunications services and charges, creating two new subdivisions, providing that long distance revenues collected from users of telecommunications relay service under GS 62-157(f) and the telecommunications relay service surcharge collected under GS 62-157 are exempt from taxes imposed under GS 105‑164.13. Requires certain recordkeeping of the amounts of surcharge collected if the surcharge is not assessed separately on customer bills.
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