California regulators considering text messaging fee to help fund programs for low-income mobile users

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SACRAMENTO — Texting could soon cost a little extra in California, if a plan currently being worked on by state regulators goes through, according to FOX 5 in San Diego.

The text messaging fee currently being proposed would fund programs that make phone service accessible to lower-income residents, according to reports.

The California Public Utilities Commission is scheduled to vote on the proposal next month, but critics have already come out against the scheme, the San Jose Mercury News reported.

“It’s a dumb idea,” Jim Wunderman, president of the Bay Area Council business group, told the paper. “This is how conversations take place in this day and age, and it’s almost like saying there should be a tax on the conversations we have.”

While the amount consumers would be expected to pay remained unclear, some business groups are saying the new charges could cost wireless users more than $44 million a year, FOX11 Los Angeles reported.

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