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GTE and Per Minute Fees for local calls
GTE has implemented 'per minute' fees for local calls in other areas, will Cumberland County and Western Clark County be affected by the 'per minute' fees? For the time being the answer is NO. This area used to be served by Alltel which was purchased by GTE SOUTH. GTE SOUTH does not have the 'per minute' tariff (also called Usage Sensitive Service - USS) on record with the Illinois Commerce Commission. GTE NORTH does have the tariff on record with the Illinois Commerce Commission. Please read on and learn about House Bill 3892 and how it WILL affect Cumberland and Western Clark County.
What is Usage Sensitive Service (USS)? Usage Sensitive Service refers to GTE's rate change that
began in November of 1997 in some Illinois GTE communities. The USS is an ongoing conversion that will continue to spread throughout the state and is scheduled to be completed by the end of 1999. GTE stated "the USS plan
now applies to more than a half-million GTE customers in Illinois". When the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) approved GTE's rate restructuring plan in 1994, the ICC also gave the company permission to expand USS billing
to all remaining communities in the state.
What is being done about the Usage Sensitive Service in other areas? There is a case before the Illinois Commerce Commission on behalf of these communitites that have filed a petition to oppose Usage Sensitive Service (Docket Number 98-0200 and 98-0537). If you know someone who is affected by Usage Sensitive Service and their town is not on this list, ask them to file a petition to intervene from this library. The Citizen's Utitilty Board and the Illinois Attorney General have also filed a petition to invernene on behalf of Illinois customers.
Will more areas be converted to Usage Sensitive Service? Yes. The following communitites will be converted 11/1/98: Apple River, Batchtown, Brocton, Brussels, Carrier Mills, Cerro Gordo, Chatsworth, Chesterfield/Rockbridge, Chrisman, Deland, Dow, East Dubuque, Eldred, Elizabeth, Fieldon, Grand Ridge, Greenview, Hamburg, Hammond, Hardin, Hettick, Hillview, Long Point, Lostant, Low Point/Washburn, Magnolia, Manchester, Maroa, Marshall, Medora, Metcalf, Niantic, Odell, Orangeville, Patterson, Piper City, Pleasant Hill, Redmon, Roanoke, Roodhouse, Rutland, Sibley, Strawn, Teutopolis, Toluca, Vermilion, Warren, Warrensburg, Wenona, West Union, White Hall, Westchester. The following is a listing of the last of the remaining 41 GTE North Inc. communities to be converted late this year or the first of 1999: Andover, Apple Canyon, Astoria, Ava, Benld, Benson, Bunker Hill, Bureau Junction, Claremont, Cobden, Coffeen, Cuba, Cypress, De Soto, Donnellson, Fillmore, Grand Tower, Hebron, Karnak, Kirkwood, La Moille, Little York, Mansfield, Matherville, Milton, Minonk, New Boston, North Henderson, Pearl, Prairie City, Preemption, Ramsey, Richmond, Roseville, Sherrard, Shirland, Sorento, Spring Grove, Weldon, Wonder Lake, Wyanet. If you know anyone in these communities you might alert them to the coming change and inform them about the petition to intervene.
So what does all this have to do with Illinois House Bill #44 also known as the 'GTE Bill'? The bill amends the Public Utilities Act by requiring telecommunications carriers providing residential local exchange telecommunications service to provide, at a minimum, a untimed local calling zone which includes a medical facility, local government offices, schools, grocery store, pharmacy, and a department store. Read the Full Text of House Bill #44 (was #3892).
What can I do to support Illinois House Bill #44 (was 3892)?
You can do 4 things to support this bill:
1) Contact (in person or by phone) your Illinois House Representative and let them know that you want them to support House Bill #44. For Cumberland County and Western Clark County our Representative is Duane Noland.
2) Contact (in person or by phone) your Illinois State Senator and let them know that you want them to support House Bill #44. For Cumberland County and Western Clark County our State Senator is Kevin Kehoe.
3) Contact your local Farm Bureau and ask them to become involved supporting House Bill #44 as the areas affected are small, rural communities. The Illinois Farm Bureau has a legislative committee that communicates their position on bills through their lobbyist in Springfield. Let your local Farm Bureau know that this bill is important to rural Illinois communitites. Here are the local County Farm Bureau Contacts:
Clark County Farm Bureau 255 W. Cumberland P.O. Box W Martinsville,IL 61442-0468 Phone: 217-382-4144 Fax: 217-382-5788
Cumberland County Farm Bureau 303 E Main Toledo,IL 62468-0008 Phone: 217-849-3031 Fax: 217-849-2273
Shelby County Farm Bureau PO Box 409 Shelbyville,IL 62565-0409
4) Let your friends and neighbors know what they can do to support this bill and encourage them to do so.
You can read the history of the USS protest and follow the latest news by going to the USS Protest Website.