Congressman Bob Latta (R-OH) and Congressman Peter Welch (D-VT), Co-Chairmen of the Rural Telecommunications Working Group, today reintroduced a bipartisan resolution that outlines steps the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) can take to improve telephone service in rural areas.
"Uncompleted calls to rural areas has been a recurring issue for many of the constituents we represent," said Latta and Welch. "While the FCC continues to take action to pursue those entities responsible for dropped calls, the problem persists. This bipartisan resolution builds upon Congressional and FCC efforts to resolve this matter, and reiterates the need for the Commission to aggressively pursue those who violate call completion rules. We must do more to protect the daily communications needs of rural communities, businesses, public safety officials, and families residing in rural areas who depend on and deserve reliable telephone service."
Dependable, quality telephone service is critical to keeping rural parts of America competitive in the national economy. One of the main causes of poor rural call completion stems from retail long-distance providers' increasing use of third parties to deliver calls to rural areas at reduced rates.
Latta and Welch's resolution expresses a sense of Congress that telephone service must be improved in rural areas of the country, and states that no entity may unreasonably discriminate against telephone users in these areas. It also encourages the FCC to aggressively pursue entities that violate FCC call completion rules and contribute to poor quality telecommunications services in rural areas, and to take enforceable action against those responsible.