New State Law Adjusts 911 Surcharges

June 18, 2014
Dwayne Page
Bradley Mullinax

Local land line telephone subscribers will soon be seeing a reduction in 911 surcharges. The rate will increase for cell phone customers.

According to Bradley Mullinax, Director of the DeKalb County Emergency Communications District, the Tennessee General Assembly recently passed a bill (SB 2407/HB2255) that will take effect in January 2015 to effectively lower the 911 surcharge for DeKalb County citizens. "Currently, residential customers pay $1.50 per month for 911 service. The new legislation will reduce the residential surcharge to $1.16 per month. We are excited about this legislation since the results will actually increase funding for DeKalb County 911. Essentially, the TN General Assembly's actions have set the 911 surcharge at $1.16 across the board for all counties. As a result, there will be a larger pool of money to be distributed among the districts," said Mullinax.

"Cell phone customers will see a small increase in charges. The current rate is $1.00 per cell phone and that charge will also be set at $1.16, an increase of only 16 cents per cell phone," he added.

Meanwhile, Mullinax reports that several upgrades are being made in the DeKalb County 911 system. " Specifically, the district has purchased a new mapping system that has been made available to many of the county officials and government offices in DeKalb County. This service should help make doing business with county government much easier. Additionally, we are in the process of making major radio upgrades in the community. There will be more information on the radio updates once they are complete. However, the most important part of these upgrades is they are being completed with grant funding with no local match. Therefore, No tax dollars have been required to make these upgrades," said Mullinax.

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