If the ban on Internet access taxes expires as planned in December, they would cost taxpayers nearly $15 billion a year, according to new study from a conservative group.
The AAF study found that if states tax Internet access the same way they already tax cellphones, consumers would pay $10 billion a year, while businesses would pay $4.7 billion.
"Although Internet access has become such an ingrained piece of everyday life, new taxes would induce consumers to downgrade their service, putting the brakes on quickly rising average speeds and placing downward pressure on investment," said Will Rinehart, director of technology at the AAF, who conducted the study.
In September, President Obama pushed the expiration of the Internet Tax Freedom Act back to Dec. 11, the fourth time it has been extended, but lawmakers are looking for a long-term solution.
Without the tax moratorium, states could charge taxes for Internet access, data consumption and email, among other things.