HARRISBURG—The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today authorized a telephone charge for Forest County residents that will help pay for the county’s 911 system.
Forest County, an eighth-class county, requested a contribution rate of $1.50 per telephone line. Telephone companies provide service for more than 4,700 telephone access lines in the county. Verizon PA Inc., Alltel Pennsylvania Inc., Verizon North Inc., Venus Telephone Corporation and various competitive local exchange carriers serve the county.
The Public Emergency Telephone Act of 1990 provides for a statewide 911 emergency communication system to be administered by the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA). The law allows the counties to recover the cost for 911 systems by accessing a fee on every telephone line.
Local phone companies collect the fee for the counties. The maximum fee that can be collected per telephone line is $1 for first- and second-class counties; $1.25 for third- through fifth-class counties; and $1.50 for sixth- through eighth-class counties.
The PUC reviews the contribution rates to make sure they do not exceed the allowable amount, and then forwards a decision to PEMA. The PUC has 90 days to submit its recommendation to PEMA as to whether a proposed distribution rate should be approved or modified. The plan and the surcharge are effective from the date of the PUC order for a period of three years.
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission ensures safe, reliable and reasonably priced electric, natural gas, water, telephone and transportation service for Pennsylvania consumers, by regulating public utilities and by serving as stewards of competition.
For recent news releases, or more information about the PUC, visit our website at www.puc.state.pa.us.
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Docket No. M-00061934