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Lawmakers want to crack down on hidden fees in your phone internet

By on September 10, 2019

first_imgLawmakers want to crack down on surprise phone, internet bills.  Getty Images Have you been surprised by the charges on your monthly phone or internet bills? Lawmakers want to get rid of those hidden fees.Sen. Edward Markey, a Democrat from Massachusetts, and Rep. Anna Eshoo, a Democrat from California, last week introduced the Truth-in-Billing, Remedies and User Empowerment over Fees (‘TRUE Fees’) Act. If passed, the bill will require phone, cable and internet companies to include all charges in the prices they advertise for services as well as provide consumers solutions when they’re wrongfully charged.”For too long customers have been surprised each month to find that their cable, phone and internet bills are much higher than the advertised price. The TRUE Fees Act would put an end to these advertising practices that only confuse consumers about the true costs,” Markey said in a release. “If phone, cable and internet companies won’t be fully transparent with consumers, then Congress should act.”Hidden phone and internet fees aren’t rare experiences for consumers. AT&T in June quietly doubled its administrative fee from 76 cents to $1.99, which could help the company rake in $800 million more in revenue. These “below the line” charges aren’t considered to be part of the regular service fee customers pay each month. Instead, they’re generally listed with local and state taxes at the bottom of a bill, though the fees aren’t required by the government.This bill would also allow customers to end their contract early without a penalty if the provider increases prices, prevent providers from increasing equipment fees unless the equipment is improved, and prohibit forced arbitration clauses for wrongful billing errors. Lawmakers who backed the bill include House Reps. Mark Takano, Eleanor Norton, Tim Ryan, Earl Blumenauer, Jamie Raskin, Joe Courtney, Donald Beyer, Janice Schakowsky and Mike Thompson, along with Sens. Richard Blumenthal, Amy Klobuchar, Ben Cardin, Elizabeth Warren, Ron Wyden and Tina Smith.  Share your voice Tags Politics Mobilecenter_img 2 Commentslast_img read more

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450000 in Barcelona proindependence demo

By on September 3, 2019
first_imgProtesters wave pro-independence Catalan Estelada flags whild leading signs reading `Free the Jordis` during a demonstration in Barcelona on 21 October, 2017 in support of two leaders of Catalan separatist groups, Jordi Sanchez and Jordi Cuixart, who have been detained pending an investigation into sedition charges. Photo: AFPSome 450,000 people took to the streets of Barcelona on Saturday, local police said, after Spain moved to dismiss Catalonia’s regional government to thwart its leaders’ independence bid.Catalan president Carles Puigdemont was among the huge crowds filling the streets around the Paseo de Gracia boulevard, with many chanting “independence” and “freedom”.The demonstration was originally called to protest against the detention of two influential separatist activists, Jordi Cuixart and Jordi Sanchez, who are being held on sedition charges accused of instigating protests in the run-up to Catalonia’s banned independence referendum on 1 October.But Saturday’s move by Madrid to seize powers from the semi-autonomous region — which could include taking control of its police force and replacing its public media chiefs — was on the minds of many in the crowds.”I feel totally outraged and extremely sad,” said Meritxell Agut, a 22-year-old bank worker.”They’ve trampled on our rights and our ideas as Catalans,” she told AFP, adding: “They can destroy everything they want but we’ll keep on fighting.”last_img

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