98RS HB582


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HB 582 (BR 1808) - Dw. Butler, Ro. Adams

     AN ACT relating to the unauthorized switching of a customer's telecommunications provider.
     Create a new section of KRS Chapter 278 to prohibit switching a customer from one to another telecommunications provider without the customer's written authorization; require the provider to maintain a record of the customer's authorization, and comply with verification rules established by the Federal Communications Commission, if applicable; require a provider to switch a customer back within 5 working days if the customer does not want the change and asks to be switched back within 60 days; require the provider that makes an unauthorized switch to bear all costs associated with the switch if the customer notifies one of the listed parties within 30 days after receiving the first bill from the new provider; allow the Public Service Commission to penalize a provider for willful or repeated violations, and to promulgate administrative regulations to implement the section.


     HCS - Allow electronically recorded as well as written authorization, and require providers to maintain records of authorization for one year; require provider to switch a customer back within 5 business days if requested; require customer to charge slamming within 180 days, rather than 30 days after receiving the first bill; set maximum civil penalty against a provider at $10,000 for each violation; remove provision for damages paid by one provider to another.
     HCA (1, T. Kerr) - Specify that a merger or acquisition does not constitute a change of provider requiring the customer's authorization.
     HFA (1, J. Gray) - Define letter of agency; require that language authorizing a change of provider be printed in a type size as large as any in the document, if the letter of agency is combined with an inducement or with information on a different subject.
     SCS - Exempt local phone companies from the requirement that the customer's authorization must be written or electronically recorded if the customer initiates the call and asks to change his long-distance carrier; limit the amount the provider must refund a customer who was switched without authorization to payments in excess of the amount the customer would have paid if service had not been changed; specify that a letter of agency must be signed by the customer, but may be written by someone else.

     Feb 11-introduced in House
     Feb 12-to Tourism Development and Energy (H)
     Feb 20-posted in committee
     Mar 4-reported favorably, 1st reading, to Calendar with Committee Substitute and Committee Amendment (1)
     Mar 5-2nd reading, to Rules; floor amendment (1) filed to Committee Substitute
     Mar 6-posted for passage in the Regular Orders of the Day for March 9, 1998
     Mar 10-3rd reading, passed 98-0 with Committee Substitute, committee amendment (1) and floor amendment (1)
     Mar 11-received in Senate
     Mar 12-to Agriculture and Natural Resources (S)
     Mar 23-reported favorably, 1st reading, to Consent Calendar with Committee Substitute
     Mar 24-2nd reading, to Rules; posted for passage in the Consent Orders of the Day for March 25, 1998
     Mar 25-3rd reading, passed 37-0 with Committee Substitute
     Mar 26-received in House; posted for passage for concurrence in Senate amendment
     Mar 31-House concurred in Senate Committee Substitute; passed 88-0
     Apr 1-enrolled, signed by each presiding officer, delivered to Governor
     Apr 13-signed by Governor

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