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Pallone & Doyle Praise House Passage of Legislation to Preserve Home & Office Phone Numbers in Emergencies

Sep 29, 2020
Press Release

Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) and Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Mike Doyle (D-PA) released the following joint statement today after the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1289, the "Preserving Home and Office Numbers in Emergencies Act of 2020" or "PHONE Act of 2020":

“This important legislation is necessary to provide some stability for consumers left homeless by natural disasters – which is, tragically, a growing problem as climate change continues to produce an unprecedented number of wildfires, hurricanes and flooding,” said Pallone and Doyle. “Families who lose their homes in a natural disaster should not have to worry about their phone company giving their phone numbers away to someone else. We are proud of the work that went into this legislation and thank all our colleagues for working with us to get it passed today.”

The House of Representatives passed the following bill:

H.R. 1289, the “Preserving Home and Office Numbers in Emergencies Act of 2019,” introduced by Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA), prohibits providers of voice service from reassigning phone numbers of subscribers in certain designated areas, within an area subject to a major disaster declaration, for up to two years after the declaration. The bill also prohibits providers of voice service from assessing early termination fees to cancel service, or connection fees to re-subscribe at a new address, for subscribers whose residence is rendered inaccessible or uninhabitable due to a major disaster. The bill passed on the House Floor by voice vote.