Telephone Service Assistance Available

Sen. Kathy Sheran today reminds local residents of the Lifeline and Link-Up programs that provide discounts on basic residential phone service to low-income consumers.
“Access to telephone service provides a lifeline to emergency help and a vital link to local emergency services, community and government resources, and family and friends,” Sen. Sheran noted. “I urge anyone who is struggling to afford telephone service to take advantage of these two programs.”
Under the federal Lifeline program, telephone customers who participate in or are eligible for certain assistance programs are able to receive a basic telephone service discount of approximately $10 per month. Link-Up provides a 50% reduction in the telephone service installation charge, up to a maximum of $30, for qualifying households that do not currently have telephone service.
Three discounts are available with one simple application:

• LINK-UP: A discount on telephone installation charges
• LIFELINE: A federally-funded discount on your monthly bill
• TELEPHONE ASSISTANCE PLAN (TAP): A Minnesota-funded discount on your monthly bill.
Sen. Sheran also noted that to qualify, the telephone service must be in your name, you must participate in at least one of the qualifying assistance programs (Energy Assistance, MFIP, Food Stamps, and others) or your income must be at or below 135% of the federal poverty guidelines.
For an assistance application or more information, contact your local phone company, visit www.puc.state.mn.us or www.lifeline.gov , or contact the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission at 651-296-0406, 1-800-657-3782, and consumer.puc@state.mn.us

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Senator Kathy Sheran
Kathy Sheran represents District 19, which includes portions of Blue Earth, Le Sueur, and Nicollet counties in the south central part of the state. She chairs the Health, Human Services and Housing Committee.

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