Illinois legislature considers satellite TV tax

By WEEK Producer

November 30, 2012 Updated Nov 30, 2012 at 10:32 AM CDT

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- If you are a satellite TV customer, it may soon cost you more to receive that service in Illinois.

The state legislature is considering a five percent tax which would raise $75 million for the state annually, to be used toward education.

The bill passed the senate in May, but stalled in the house. Since then, it has been picking up sponsors, a sign many believe shows leadership support of the bill.

Supporters say it will put satellite subscribers on even footing with those who use cable television, which is similarly paid. Opponents say cable tax goes to local cities, not the state, to help offset the cost of installing cables lines throughout a community.

State Representative Dave Leitch says of all the issues facing the state right now, constituents have been the most vocal about this one.

"People who have the cable company want those with DirecTV to pay the same tax that they pay. The people who have DirecTV do not want to pay that tax. I have received probably at least 1,000 phone calls or emails on that subject," said Rep. Leitch.

Many believe democrats have supported the bill because it raises money, meaning they would not have to make as many spending cuts.

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