As technology changes, Ohio leaders understand that regulations need to keep pace.
House Bill 402 makes important updates to Ohio law, updating rotary phone rules to fit the internet age and to keep pace with work done in neighboring states to adapt to emerging communications products and investment.
It maintains important consumer protections for residents and small businesses and reflects many hours of work and compromise by lawmakers and interested parties.
The legislation updates Ohio law to adapt to fundamental changes in how customers are communicating in 2018.
Fewer people are using basic home phone service and more are shifting to wireless.
Ohioans still maintaining their basic home service live predominantly in areas where telecommunications competition is fierce and customers have many providers to choose from.
Greater pricing flexibility reflects the reality of a fully competitive communications market of 2018.
House Bill 402 updates regulators’ inspection powers to be focused on a competitive marketplace, complaint-driven model rather than an antiquated, monopoly-provider model of years and years ago.
It retains the authority of the Public Utility Commission of Ohio to review mergers and transfers in cases where the Federal Communications Commission doesn’t already have jurisdiction and oversight.
House Bill 402 allows for a modest annual increase. Currently, rates can increase $1.25 per year for the lowest-cost service. House Bill 402 allows the rate for basic monthly phone service to increase another $.75, for a total of $2.00 per year.
Nothing in the current version of House Bill 402 alters the existing service quality requirements in Ohio law. Assertions that the bill would eliminate service quality protections are not true.
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