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Public Service Commission


07/20/2004 Contact: 850-413-6482

PSC Expands Lifeline, Link-Up Eligibility

TALLAHASSEE — The Florida Public Service Commission voted Tuesday to expand the qualifying criteria for Lifeline and Link-Up -- programs that are designed to make basic telephone service more affordable to the consumers of the state who are most in need.

The Commission also added a self-certification option, making the program more accessible to more consumers.

          “Access to basic phone service for all Americans is an important national and state goal,” Commission Chairman Braulio L. Baez said.  “This vote significantly expands the pool of individuals eligible for service, which is an appropriate stimulus for reaching the objective of universal access.”

          The Commission vote:

  • Expands the  income-based criteria for Lifeline and Link-Up to 135 percent of federal poverty guidelines from the existing 125 percent.
  • Adds the National School Lunch program to the list of programs for which Lifeline and Link-Up eligibility is based.
  • Provides a self-certifying option for individuals enrolled in needs-based programs. Individuals who elect the self-certification option would receive a monthly credit of $8.25 that is applied toward basic phone service.

 “The Commission’s action today is a very positive step forward in our efforts to enroll more eligible Floridians in the Lifeline program,” Baez said. “By streamlining the steps necessary to enroll in Lifeline, the self-certification option should dramatically increase the number of people who will qualify.”