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Release Date: June 01, 2006

Former Deputy Town Supervisor Richard Garfunkel stopped by at my office yesterday and showed me copies of his Verizon bill. The Verizon wireless bill indicated some of the taxes he and his wife are paying are going to the White PlainsSchool district($1.60). White PlainsCityreceived $1.07. This has been going on for months. I would appreciate it if other residents of the town would check to see if their taxes are going to White Plainsincorrectly. If you are experiencing a similar problem please advise and send me a copy of your bill. I will be advising Verizon of this problem – and will also request that the taxes be allocated properly—and retroactively. The following is a statement from Richard Garfunkel:

I happened to look at the listing of taxes on my March Verizon wireless bill and noticed that I was charged a WP city sales tax and a WP school tax.  I called Verizon Wireless and was told that recent (March 1) legislation gave Verizon wireless the right to collect this tax for the city of WP.  I told the guy that I did not live in WP, and he told me that I live close enough to WP for me to be paying the tax to WP.  I asked him if he knew about taxation w/o representation.  He understood my complaint, but he said that nothing could be done about it.  When I received my bill today, I noticed the same tax being collected.  I called again to get a better explanation.  I was told that Verizon had been making a mistake with my bill.  Because I had moved 4 years ago, only one of my cellular phones had a correct address change.  The other was still listed in their system with a W P address.  Hence, the tax on that line.  No place on my phone bill is this incorrect address indicated.  There is no way for a customer to learn of the error, unless one calls to find out the real truth.  I spoke to a supervisor and then was put in touch with an office that will put in a claim to get the back taxes returned to me.  I told the person in the last office that I would give her a month to get my back taxes returned to me for ALL the months that I had been taxed incorrectly.  I really don't want to go back through 4 years worth of bills in the files in my basement, but I will if I have to do so.  If I don't get a full refund for all the taxes that were collected incorrectly, I will send a letter to the tax department in the City of WPasking for a refund, or I will go to Small Claims Court, or I will file a complaint with the Public Service Commission.  I wonder how many other people are being incorrectly billed o n their phone bills who don't take the time to read the bills carefully and then put in the complaint. Surely, people should be made aware of this.


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