Council of States opposes new rules on radio and television fees

Companies with fewer than 250 employees must continue to pay radio and television fees. The Council of States on Tuesday rejected a parliamentary initiative by Ticino's center national councilor Fabio Regazzi calling for them to be exempt.

serafeBy 27 votes to 14 with four abstentions, the small chamber followed the motion of the majority of its Commission for Transport and Telecommunications (KVF-S). The parliamentary initiative is thus off the table. The National Council had approved it in the spring session.

Today, companies have to pay the media levy if they generate more than CHF 500,000 in sales per year. Regazzi saw this as an unfair double taxation of small and medium-sized companies. Their owners already paid as private individuals.

The majority of the KVF-S was of the opinion that adjustments to the tariff structure had already reduced the burden on companies. In addition, the limit of 250 employees was arbitrary and would lead to new injustices. This, for example, if one thinks of tourism businesses, where the number of employees varies greatly depending on the season.

Olivier Français (FDP/VD) said on behalf of the Commission majority that the electorate had already expressed its opinion on the issue in 2018 with the clear rejection of the "No Billag" initiative. This decision should be respected. Accepting the parliamentary initiative would also lead to an additional burden on private households.

The Commission minority objected that the current regulation could lead to hardship for smaller companies with large sales and small margins. Small and medium-sized companies are already heavily burdened by high energy prices, said Hansjörg Knecht (SVP/AG). In any case, due to population growth, the income from the levy for radio and television would increase. (SDA)

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