Illinois phone users to pay fee hike to save 911 service
Illinoisans will pay 72 percent more in phone line fees to keep 911 service alive, the Edgar County Watchdogs reported recently.
According to the June 1 report, legislation passed in the recent session calls for a 911 fee increase of 87 cents to $1.50, or 72 percent, per line for most people in the state starting on Jan. 1, 2018. In Chicago, the fee could go up to $5 per line.
The Legislature overrode Gov. Bruce Rauner's amendatory veto of the legislation, with the House voting 90-22 and the Senate voting 43-1.
In 2015, the Legislature voted to have the state police take over 911 administration and repeal the Emergency Telephone System Board by June 30, 2017. Current phone fees were not creating enough funding, 911 operators said, according to nprillinois.org.
The legislation also would open the door for AT&T to eliminate its so-called legacy landlines in the state. In a report by Illinois Information Service and Illinois Public Radio on wsiu.org, AT&T said the move would have an effect on about 10 percent of its customers in the state, with most landline-using homes using newer technology like fiber-optic cables. Twenty-one other states have pushed through similar legislation allowing the move by AT&T.
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Edgar County, IL, United States