Telecommunications and utility services are essential to health, safety, and economic welfare. These services must be reliable, safe, and affordable.
Credit histories and loan records are tools traditionally used by lenders to decide whether to give consumers credit.
All consumers should receive service that meets their daily needs at a reasonable price. The rates for these services should be fair, reasonable, and affordable.
Rapid changes in technology have made protecting consumer privacy increasingly challenging.
Most states and the District of Columbia have established utility consumer advocate offices.
Policymakers use the tax system to raise revenue and to promote social policy goals. For example, they may want to encourage desirable behaviors, such as home ownership.
There are two main ways for governments to collect taxes. One is by taxing income directly. This is known as an income tax. The other is taxing only income that is spent.
Currently, some types of income are either taxed at lower rates than ordinary income or are exempt from taxation to some degree.
In general, only cash income is subject to the income tax. In-kind benefits—benefits that are received as goods or services rather than as cash—are not.
Tax credits and deductions are two ways to reduce tax liability. Tax credits directly reduce the amount of taxes owed, dollar-for-dollar.