Arkansas: no more 10-cent pay phone calls
October 11, 1997
Web posted at: 3:18 p.m. EDT (1918 GMT)
LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas (CNN) -- Pay-telephone rates in
Arkansas, where calls have cost 10 cents since 1953, are
about to jump to 35 cents in some parts of the state, as the
last holdouts fall to new federal deregulation rules.
Federal Communications Commission provisions deregulating pay
telephones took effect in Arkansas on Tuesday as the agency
implemented another provision of the 1996 Telecommunications
Before the new law, increases had to win FCC approval. But
the agency rejected proposals before, saying that Arkansas
was a rural state, where many didn't have phones
Southwestern Bell, with 14,300 pay phones in the state, is
boosting the price to 35 cents, said spokeswoman Rhonda
Cline. GTE with 1,500 pay phones also expects an increase.
Alltel Corp. said 10-cent calls cost more than they bring in,
but has not decided on an increase.
As recently as a year ago, telephone company subsidies kept
calls to a dime in Arkansas, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and
Vermont. In January, Nynex announced it was raising rates to
a quarter -- its first increase in the three New England
states in more than 40 years.