Rural Telecommunications Working Group Co-Chairs, Rep. Bob Latta (R-OH) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT), released the following joint statement in response to the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) announcement that the agency will take formal steps to investigate and confront the problem of uncompleted long distance calls to rural areas:
“We applaud the FCC’s efforts to combat the frequent problem of uncompleted long distance calls to rural areas. Existing problems with long distance call completion in rural areas are adversely impacting families, businesses and public safety entities in those areas. Today’s Order is a critical step to providing solutions to these problems and we look forward to working with the FCC on further efforts to ensure affordable and high quality telecommunications services are delivered in rural America.”
Uncompleted long distance calls to rural areas have been a growing problem over the last few years. In October 2011, the FCC established a Rural Call Completion Task Force to investigate this problem. The FCC circulated an Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in September of this year to ensure that calls to rural areas are completed. Representatives Latta and Welch continue to raise awareness about this issue at the FCC and urge the agency to closely examine this serious matter.