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Legislative Memo

Darren Suarez
Director of Government Affairs
T 518.465.7511
www.bcnys.org

BILL:

A.9645 Brennan / S.7321 Tkaczyk

Support

SUBJECT:

Limiting Consumer's Telephone Service

 

DATE:

June 13, 2014

 

This legislation would amend the Public Service Law to curb customer's ability to use wireless service alternatives. The Business Council does not support efforts to deny customers access to a preferred telecommunication technology which may better meet their needs than conventional technology.

This legislation is unwarranted as the bill seeks to reverse deliberative steps taken by the Public Service Commission (“the Commission"). The Commission has advanced amendments to its service-quality regulation to reflect significant market shifts in technology, market structure, and consumer needs and preferences.

Wireless service alternatives provide customers with the ability to make and receive voice telephone calls and to access local and toll calling, emergency services with Enhanced 911 capability, directory assistance services, and telecommunications relay services. The directory listing processes are the same as for landline customers, including the availability of non-published service.

Wireless service alternatives offer a business plan that includes features comparable to or more extensive than those included in traditional offerings. The net price of a wireless service alternative plan can be at or below the price of the comparable tariffed plan, often offering consumers a dynamic and affordable product.

For these reasons we strongly oppose the advancement of this legislation.