O'Rielly Tells 3 Governors to Stop 911 Fee Diversion
FCC Commissioner Mike O’Rielly urged New York, New Jersey and Rhode Island governors to end 911 fee shifting. “The practice of diverting 9-1-1 fees gives your states proverbial black eyes, harms public safety, and makes your states ineligible for funding to modernize your emergency call centers,” O'Rielly wrote in an April 5 letter, released Tuesday, to Democrats Andrew Cuomo of New York, Phil Murphy of New Jersey and Gina Raimondo of Rhode Island. The FCC said those states lead the practice (see 1812190059). “The mere act undermines the willingness of consumers, feeling duped by their local and state representatives, to support current levels and future raises in program spending, even when there is a compelling need to modernize individual systems,” O’Rielly said. Diversion reduces “overall support for the entire fee structure, even in areas outside your states,” and “shortchanges the budgets of emergency call centers and has prevented systems from being upgraded,” the commissioner said. The governors didn't comment.