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Florida State Seal State of Florida
Public Service Commission


11/02/2004 Contact: 850-413-6482

Commission Directs Additional $1.6 Million to Lifeline and Link-Up Programs

TALLAHASSEE — The state’s Lifeline and Link-Up Florida programs will receive an infusion of nearly $1.6 million to promote participation based on a unanimous vote of the Florida Public Service Commission Tuesday.

The money -- $1,589,368 – comes from unclaimed refunds the Commission ordered BellSouth to pay  in 2001 for the imposition of inappropriate late payment charges.

“Any time we can channel money into the promotion of these two programs, we have taken a positive step in our efforts to connect every eligible Floridian to the telecommunications network,” Commission Chairman Braulio Baez said.  “To the extent we can encourage participation at no cost to the state’s ratepayers, we have to be happy.”

The Lifeline and Link-up Florida programs offer assistance to qualified residential telephone customers to ensure basic telephone service remains affordable.  The  Link-Up Florida program provides a reduction of up to 50 percent in the telephone hook-up charge to a maximum of $30.  The Lifeline Assistance program provides a credit of up to $13.50 for local monthly phone service.