I take care of my retired mother's bills and she still has a basic wired phone. Each month when I look at the bill I just shake my head and think that these guys can basically put whatever they want on the bill and no one is going to question it - it's like a license to steal.
The basic phone service is $35.50 and she pays [GASP] $20 extra for unlimited long distance.
After that, they roll up their sleeves and get busy with Taxes, Fees and Surcharges....
Non-Telecom Services Surcharge
Subscriber Line & Access Recovery Charge
Long Distance Line Charge
Package Federal Excise Tax
Package PA Sales Tax
Additional Federal Excise Tax
Additional Federal Universal Services Fund Surcharge
Additional PA Sales Tax
Voice Federal Property Tax Recovery Fee
Voice Federal Regulatory Recovery Fee
Voice Federal Universal Service Fund Surcharge
Voice PA Interstate Gross Receipts Tax
Voice PA Interstate Gross Receipts Tax (yes, it's listed twice with different amounts)
Voice PA Sales Tax
Voice PA State 911 Tax
Voice PA State Surcharge Tax
All to the tune of an additional $23.13 of taxes and surcharges. Wow...