Canada’s regulating body for telecommunications plans to phase out the local service subsidies for those with phone lines in rural and remote areas.
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission believes customers with access to wired internet speeds don’t need traditional phone lines anymore.
John Meldrum with SaskTel says this will affect about 100-thousand Saskatchewan households.
He explains the federal subsidy means those in harder-to-service and therefore more expensive-to-service areas, can have affordable phone service.
“Basically, they’re suggesting the phase out will stop the subsidies as early as January 1, 2018,” said Meldrum.
Meldrum says not everyone who has a phone has internet and phasing out the subsidy means potential rate increases that could double their current phone rate.
SaskTel urges residents to respond to the CRTC’s call for comments to let your opinion be known.