Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Ohio House Supports Telecommunications Reform Bill

COLUMBUS—State Representative Combs (R-Hamilton) today announced the passage of House Bill 276 from the Ohio House of Representatives. This legislation revises the state policy regarding telecommunications service and repeals current law governing alternative regulation of telephone companies.

House Bill 276 will create a more favorable environment for competition in telecommunications, while retaining consumer safeguards and lead toward competitive pricing. It will establish uniform regulations for telecommunication services and permit the industry to invest in Ohio’s infrastructure and technology, instead of overly burdensome regulatory compliance.

“Today marks the first step in modernizing Ohio’s antiquated telecommunications laws,” said Combs. “This bill will be a much needed catalyst to help bring jobs and economic development to Ohio.”

Since 2001, traditional landline telephone companies have lost 3 million customers due to increased competition from rapidly advancing technologies, including wireless and digital telephone service. More than 20 states have adopted telecom reform laws, which will spur investment in new technologies and create vital jobs.

House Bill 276 is supported by the Ohio Chamber, National Federation of Independent Business, Ohio Telecommunications Association, AT&T, and Institute for Policy Innovation. Rep. Combs is a sitting member of the House Public Utilities Committee.