CINCINNATI (CN) – A telecommunications company was deprived of its free speech rights when the state of Kentucky prevented it from mentioning a tax increase on customer invoices, the 6th Circuit ruled.
Kentucky taxed the gross revenues of telecommunications providers by 1.3 percent. When it enacted the tax, the Kentucky Legislature prevented the companies from collecting the tax directly from consumers.
Bell South and AT&T successfully argued in district court that the prohibition of mentioning the tax on invoices violated their First Amendment rights.
J. Sutton agreed that Kentucky did not have the right to “keep consumers (and voters) in the dark about the tax and its impact on their wallets.”