Update to Call Quality Issues in Rural Iowa

Iowa Congressman David Young has cosponsored a bill to improve phone service in rural communities. Families and businesses in rural America should have the same communication access as those living in urban areas,” Young said.
The legislation was approved in the U.S. Thursday and now goes to the President for his signature.

February 9, 2018
Young, Welch, Klobuchar, Thune Call Quality Legislation heads to President’s desk 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Iowa Congressman David Young, Vermont Congressman Peter Welch, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, and South Dakota Senator John Thune announced their bipartisan, bicameral legislation to improve call completions has passed the House and now goes to the President’s desk for his signature.

Congressman Young has led the fight for this legislation, the Improving Rural Call Quality and Reliability Act, in the House of Representatives, leading to the bill’s passage in the House three times: November 2016, January 2017, and today.

“After years of work with my colleagues in Congress, I am happy to see this bill finally make it to the President’s desk because Iowans living in rural America deserve the same communication access as those living in urban areas. Improving rural call completion rates and quality are important to ensuring the survival of small towns and granting Americans the choice to live and thrive in whatever community is best for them and their family, rural, urban, or anywhere in between,” said Congressman Young. “I would like to thank Senators Klobuchar and Thune for their dedication to advancing this bill in the Senate and Congressman Welch for working with me in the House to pass this bill three times.”

“Whether an emergency call or a business order, Vermonters should have confidence that their calls are completed without disruption,” Welch said. “This bill addresses the epidemic of dropped calls in rural America and will ensure calls to emergency responders, businesses, customers, family and friends are reliably connected.”

“Rural communities across Minnesota have been suffering from unreliable phone service for years. Setting these commonsense standards for providers will help ensure that people can stay connected, run their businesses, and reach the emergency services they need,” Klobuchar said. This law is a critical step in ending chronic call completion problems and an investment in the safety and strength of rural America.”

During debate on the bill, Congressman Young spoke on the House floor in favor of the bill. See the remarks HERE. Download the remarks for use in media packages HERE.

Persistent phone call completion problems in rural communities are creating major inconveniences for families, hurting businesses, and threatening public safety. The Improving Rural Call Quality and Reliability Act will direct the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to require providers that transmit voice calls to register with the agency and establish quality standards for connecting and completing calls. These reforms will help ensure families, emergency responders, and small businesses in rural America can once again rely on their calls going through.

In May of 2015, during his first term in Congress, Congressman Young introduced H.R. 2566, the Improving Rural Call Quality and Reliability Act of 2016 with Congressman Welch. The bill passed the House on November 14, 2016 and was not taken up by the Senate. Early in 2017, Congressman Young and Congressman Welch reintroduced the legislation and it promptly passed the House on January 23, 2017. Throughout the process, he has worked with colleagues on both sides of the aisle and in both chambers of Congress as well as stakeholders throughout Iowa and at the FCC.

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