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NC Legislature approves freeing phone prices

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RALEIGH — North Carolina’s General Assembly has approved legislation allowing deregulation of prices and service terms for landline telephone service providers.

The state House on Thursday accepted minor Senate changes and sent the bill to Gov. Beverly Perdue, who will decide whether to sign the measure into law.

The bill allows providers who face competition from cable, Internet or other rivals to free themselves of price and service oversight by the state Utilities Commission.

Consumers opting for basic, stand-alone residential service would see rate increases limited to inflation adjustments. Rural and urban customers must be charged comparable rates.

The Utilities Commission’s advocacy division would handle consumer complaints.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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North Carolina’s General Assembly has approved legislation allowing deregulation of prices and service terms for landline telephone service providers.

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