The Florida Public Service Commission’s (PSC) annual report on Lifeline Assistance (Lifeline) and Link-Up Florida shows consumers continue to need the discount telephone program, recording a 9.7 percent enrollment increase from 2011. As of June 30, more than 1,035,800 eligible Florida telecommunications customers participated in the Lifeline program.
Reasons for continuing program participation increases vary, and include the still sluggish economy, PSC outreach to Floridians during this year’s Lifeline Awareness Week events, coordinated enrollment through Florida’s Department of Children and Families, and program marketing by wireless companies. Twenty-four telecommunication companies, including four wireless carriers, participate in Lifeline.
“I am pleased that through targeted outreach and the implementation of FCC rule changes to curb program abuse, more eligible Floridians are aware of, and benefit from, the Lifeline program,” said PSC Chairman Ronald A. Brisé. “Without Lifeline, countless Florida households couldn’t contact health care providers, government and community services, work opportunities, or family and friends.”
The federal Lifeline program offers customers who participate in certain public assistance programs a discount of at least $12.75 per month, or $153 per year*. Applying for Lifeline is easy. Florida residents can call their local phone company, the PSC at 1-800-342-3552, or the Office of Public Counsel at 1-800-540-7039 for assistance. Information is also available at www.floridapsc.com and www.floridaopc.gov/lifeline.cfm.
The PSC’s annual report will be sent to the Governor and Legislature this month, as required by Section 364.10, Florida Statutes.
*Starting on January 11, 2013, AT&T is reducing its Lifeline credit to $9.25 per month for AT&T Lifeline program customers.
For additional information, visit www.floridapsc.com.
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