RESTON, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 20, 2007--Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S) announced today that it has reached a preliminary settlement of tax litigation involving more than 350 municipal governments across Missouri. Under the terms of the agreement, which must be approved by St. Louis County Circuit Judge Bernhardt C. Drumm, Jr. as well as the cities themselves, Sprint Nextel will pay $52.2 million in back taxes and legal fees. In turn, the cities will end all litigation against Sprint Nextel and its subsidiaries. In addition, Sprint Nextel will dismiss all tax protest litigation against the cities.
If approved by Judge Drumm and the city councils of the governments who participated in this class action litigation, the agreement would end six years of litigation between Sprint Nextel and Missouri’s local governments. The settlement follows the announcements of agreements with St. Louis and Springfield, Missouri. Final approval of the settlement is expected by May 2008.
"While many believe the attempts by Missouri local governments to expand local telephone taxes to the wireless industry violate the state constitution, Sprint Nextel recognizes that it’s in the interest of our customers, our shareholders and the cities to resolve these disputes on terms that are reasonable and fair. That’s why we’ve arranged a settlement with the cities involved in this case," commented Mark Beshears, vice president, Sprint Nextel.
As a result of this settlement, Sprint Nextel customers in Missouri will see an increase in their monthly invoices in the first quarter of 2008. The first customers to be impacted with a bill increase will be notified with a bill message included in their Jan. 2008 invoice. Their invoices will increase in Feb. 2008. Other customer groups will be notified in Feb. for a Mar. 2008 increase.
According to a recent study by CTIA - The Wireless Association, Missouri consumers pay an average of approximately 16.36 percent of their invoices in taxes, surcharges and fees. This means Missouri consumers bear the 16th highest wireless tax burden among the 50 states.
About Sprint Nextel
Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including two robust wireless networks serving about 54 million customers at the end of the third quarter 2007; industry-leading mobile data services; instant national and international walkie-talkie capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. For more information, visit www.sprint.com.
CONTACT: Sprint Nextel Media Contact: John B. Taylor, 571-437-4685 firstname.lastname@example.org
SOURCE: Sprint Nextel