Telecommunications

Telephone service regulation was added to the Commission's responsibilities in 1907. In 1950, the legislature gave the PSC the power to mandate telephone service in areas of the state that needed it. By giving the Commission this authority, the lawmakers made clear the state's intent to provide all citizens with at least a minimal level of telephone service. However, passage of the Telecommunications and Competition Development Act of 1995 (Senate Bill 137) significantly changed the Commission's regulatory responsibilities. Instead of setting prices for telecommunications services, the PSC now manages and facilitates the transition to competitive markets, establishes and administers a universal access fund to assure reasonable access to services, monitors rates and service quality, and mediates disputes between competitors.

There are 34 telephone companies providing local service in the state. Thirty are investor-owned, such as Southern Bell, and four are non-profit cooperatives owned by subscribers. As of December 31, 1996, the Commission had certificated 223 competitive local exchange providers. The PSC regulates 516 providers of long distance services. This includes 21 Interexchange carriers such as AT&T, MCI and Sprint, and 366 resellers of long distance service and 123 providers of alternative operator services.

Innovation in technology has led to a variety of communication services that are regulated by the PSC. There are 263 regulated telephone service observing equipment users in the state and 108 authorized users of automatic dialing and announcement devices. Customer-owned coin-operated telephone service (pay phones) in Georgia is provided by 517 certified individuals and companies and 30 institutional telephone service providers regulated by the PSC. As of December 31, 2000, there were 1262 telephone service providers and 371 users of automatic dialing and announcement devices and telephone service observing equipment regulated by the PSC.

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Problem with your telephone service?

If you contacted your telephone company about a service or billing problem and have not heard back within a reasonable time, you may contact the GPSC.

Consumer Advisories
Commission Warns Consumers about Utility Scams

ATLANTA, March 8, 2016 – The Georgia Public Service Commission is warning consumers to beware of telephone calls from persons claiming to be Georgia Power Company employees trying to collect payment for bills and threatening to disconnect their service.

The Commission is aware that consumers have received calls from persons purportin...

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Telecommunications Resources