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11 Feb

The Iowa Utilities Board issued its final order in 2009 in a complaint proceeding brought by Qwest and intervened by AT&T and Sprint Nextel against eight rural telephone companies in Iowa.

In the meantime, you can access existing Consumerist content below, and we encourage you to visit Consumer Reports to read the latest consumer news.To increase the incoming call volume to those rural areas, and thereby fees earned, rural carriers partner with certain telephone service providers to route their calls through the rural carrier.These services typically include phone sex and conference call providers, which expect a high volume of incoming calls.Under the regulatory mechanisms of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, wireless, and long distance carriers, such as AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile US, and Verizon, pay access fees to local exchange carriers (LECs) for calls to those carriers' subscribers.The FCC permits rural carriers to charge substantially higher access fees than carriers in urban areas, based on the rationale that they must pay for substantial fixed infrastructure costs while handling lower call volume.