How do I stop unwanted calls?
The “Do Not Call” registry- The national Do-Not-Call Registry applies to all telemarketers (with exception of some non-profit and political organizations) and covers both interstate and intrastate telemarketing calls. Commercial telemarketers cannot call you if the number is listed on the registry.
To register at no cost call 1-888-382-1222 or visit www.donotcall.gov. You must call from the phone number you are registering. It will be effective within 31 days of registration.
Direct Marketing Association Mail Preference Service- To opt out of catalog and marketing mailing lists visit www.dmaconsumers.org/cgi/offmailing.
Network Advertising Initiative- This organization helps stop companies from tracking your online activities. To learn more, visit their website at www.networkadvertising.org.
What is the End User Access Common Line?
The Federal Communications Commission authorizes local telephone companies to recover a portion of the costs of the facilities we use to connect your home or business for services through a monthly assessment on all residential and business customers. The federal end user access charge assessment is part of the FCC’s effort to support competition in the telecom market.
The federal end user access charge is a flat monthly charge assessed directly on your bill. The federal end user access charge for residential and single-line business customers are capped at $6.50 per month, and at $9.20 per line, per month for multi-line businesses. The monthly charge does not result in additional revenue for us.
What is the Federal Universal Service Charge?
The “Federal Universal Service Charge” (FUSC), also authorized by the FCC, is not part of your local service rate. The purpose of this charge is to help to keep rates affordable for all Americans, regardless of where they live. The amount of the FUSC on your monthly bill depends on the services you order and the number of telephone lines you have. In most cases, the FUSC is applied as a percentage, which is set by the FCC and varies on a quarterly basis, of the federal End User Access you are billed each month.
The Federal Universal Service Fund assists with the costs of providing affordable telecom services to low-income individuals and to residents in rural, high-cost areas. In addition, the program helps schools, libraries and rural health care providers obtain leading edge services, such as high-speed Internet access. All providers of telecom contribute to the support of these universal service programs.
Where do the Federal End User Access and FUSC go?
Both the End User Access Charge and FUSC fees collected from customers go to the federal administrative agencies created by the FCC to oversee and manage the funds. The End User Access Charge fees are re-distributed to local telephone companies based on specific costs. These funds enable community based telecom providers serving high-cost rural areas to recover some of the costs of the facilities used to connect your home or business. The FUSC fees allow us to recover our assessments for the federal universal service programs. A portion of the funds collected from the FUSC is distributed to keep rates in high-cost rural areas at or near the national average.
What does the E911 Surcharge cover?
The E-911 charge is a state/local government charge to fund emergency-911 services, such as police, fire and rescue.
What is the Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) charge?
Local telephone companies offer Telecommunications Relay Services (TRS) to help hearing or speech impaired individuals communicate via the telephone. TRS is required by Title IV of the Americans with Disabilities Act and to the extent possible, must be “functionally equivalent” to standard telephone services. Communications assistants (CA) relay the content of calls between users of special text telephones (TTY’s) and users of traditional telephones.
Costs for intrastate TRS are paid by the individual states. Generally, states recover the TRS costs through a small assessment on telephone customers in the state. The TRS charge is used to fund the relay centers and special equipment that assist hearing and speech impaired persons to communicate. Costs for interstate TRS (state-to-state TRS calls) are paid through the Interstate TRS fund, which is supported through contributions from all interstate carriers.
Are there programs available to help make telephone service more affordable for low-income customers? How is eligibility determined, and where can I apply?
Federal and state lawmakers believe that every person in America should have access to quality, affordable telecommunications service. If you participate in social programs, such as food stamps, Medicaid, the national free-lunch program, supplemental security income, or if your household income is below a certain threshold level, you may qualify for a discount on your telephone bill. This universal service” system includes:
- Lifeline assistance – provides discounts for basic monthly local telephone service
- Link-up – reduces the cost of initiating new telephone service
- Toll Limitation Service – allows you to control your long-distance charges
Eligibility for these programs varies by federal and state guidelines. To find out whether you qualify, you need to fill out standard forms available at our office and other state and local government offices in the area. Customers must meet specific, pre-determined regulations in order to obtain assistance with their local telephone service.
What is a Preferred Carrier (PIC) Freeze?
To protect against slamming, we offer a preferred carrier (PIC) freeze, which enables you to prevent any change being made to your selection of a preferred long-distance provider without your expressed consent to lift the freeze.
We make PIC freezes available to customers, regardless of the company selected as the preferred long-distance carrier, and comply with various requirements on the materials we send out about PIC freezes. In addition to specific information about any charges, we also include a clear explanation and description of the specific procedures necessary for you to lift the freeze.
You must request separate PIC freezes for: (1) Intralata long-distance service, (2) Interstate long-distance service, and (3) International long-distance service. We must obtain separate authorizations for each service for which you request a freeze.
If I want to dispute a charge that appears on my bill and don’t pay the charge will my local service be disrupted?
We identify all charges on your bill that if not paid, could result in the disconnection of your local service; such services are listed as deniable charges. The Kentucky Public Service Commission designates the charges we must classify as deniable, and those charges are identified on your bill.
Non-payment of other, non-deniable charges can result in the termination of the specific service, but will not lead to disconnection of local service. If you don’t recognize the charges, you should call the business office number listed on your bill within 30 days to ensure no interruption of your service.