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Would you stand for paying the government for e-mail?

March 16, 2006
I got this in an e-mail from a friend.  I think there will always be a place for snail mail but it shouldn’t be at the expense of progress.  What would they want to tax next, phone calls, text messaging, talking in person?
 
Take a look at this E-mail charges proposed by Canada Post AND legislation is going
forward.
The last few months have revealed that the Government of Canada
is attempting to quietly push through legislation that will affect
your use of the Internet. Under proposed legislation Canada Post will be allowed to bill
email users out of "alternate postage fees". Bill 602P will permit the
Federal Government to charge a 5 cent surcharge on every email
delivered, by billing Internet Service Providers at source.

The consumer would then be billed in turn by the ISP. Toronto
lawyer Richard Stepp, QC is working to prevent this legislation from
becoming law. The Canada Post Corporation is claiming that lost revenue
due to the proliferation of email is costing nearly $23,000,000 in
revenue per year.

You may have noticed Canada Post’s recent ad campaign "There’s
nothing like a letter". The average citizen receives about 10 pieces of email per day.
Since 1998, The cost to the typical individual would be an additional
50 cents per day, Or over $180 dollars per year, above and beyond their
regular Internet Costs. Note that this would be money paid directly to Canada
Post for Service they do not even provide. The whole point of the
Internet is Democracy and non-interference. If the Canadian Government is
permitted to tamper with our liberties by adding a surcharge to email, who
knows where it will end. You are already paying an exorbitant price
for snail mail because of bureaucratic inefficiency. It currently takes up
to 6 days for a letter to be delivered from Mississauga to
Scarborough or longer from Vancouver to Calgary. If Canada Post Corporation is
allowed to tinker with email, it will mark the end of the "free"
Internet in Canada. One back-bencher, Tony Schnell (NB) has even suggested a
"twenty to forty dollar per month surcharge on all Internet service"
above and beyond the governments proposed email charges. Note that most
of the major newspapers have ignored the story, the only exception
being the Toronto Star that called the idea of email surcharge "a useful
concept who’s time has come" (March 6th 1999 Editorial).

Don’t sit by and watch your freedoms erode away!

Send this in email to all Canadians on your list and tell your
friends and Relatives to write to their MP and say "No!" to Bill 602P.

Kate Turner
Assistant to Richard Stepp QC
Berger, Stepp and Gorman Barristers at Law
216 Bay Street Toronto, ON

It turns out that this e-mail message is false!  This quote is taken from

36th Parliament, 1st Session


EDITED HANSARD • NUMBER 211

 

CANADA POST

Mrs. Marlene Jennings (Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Public Works and Government Services.

[Translation]

We have heard about a message circulating on the Internet suggesting that Canada Post and the government want to impose a 5¢ tax on every message sent electronically in this country.

[English]

We in this House know that bill 602P does not exist. However, I would like to know if the government is contemplating policy changes which could impose levies like that.

Hon. Alfonso Gagliano (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, let me tell the House that the story that has been running on the Internet concerning Canada Post and electronic mail is false. Yes, Canada Post is testing an electronic mail system with Cebra Inc. It is not ready yet. When it is ready I will announce it, and any post mail box will be free of charge for every citizen.

 
 

But this did get you thinking, didn’t it?  Do you have something that you want to address with your member of parliament?  You can easily contact them by e-mail (no furthur charges) by finding their contact using your postal code.
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