The telephone deregulation bill sought by AT&T ran into trouble Thursday as a House committee deferred action on the bill and a House leader accused the company of heavy-handed lobbying.
For more than two hours, the House Tourism Development and Energy Committee discussed a new version of Senate Bill 88, which eliminated previous concerns that the bill would let AT&T and two other companies end land-line service in unprofitable parts of their service regions.
“We put protections in the bill to protect mom and pop with their land-line phones,” committee Chairman Keith Hall, D-Phelps, said after the meeting. But Hall did not call the new version for a vote.
He said the revised bill could be brought back and voted on by his committee in the session’s final days. Thursday is the 26th day of a legislative session that can meet no more than 30 days.
“If we want to get the committee members together and vote it, we can,” Hall said. “... But most of my committee members have conveyed to me they don’t want to vote on the bill.”o edit the title
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