911 Surcharge increase goes into effect Sunday - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

911 Surcharge increase goes into effect Sunday

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If you live in South Dakota, starting Sunday, you're going to be paying a little more on your monthly phone bill.

It's going to cost us more for the 911 service here in the state.

The charge increases from .75 cents to a $1.25 every month.

It is a increase approved earlier this year by the state legislature.  

It affects anyone who is billed, traditionally, each month by a telephone or wireless service provider. This includes but is not limited to Century Link, Sprint, Verizon, AT&T, MidContinent Communications.

Also, those who pre-pay for phone services will be charged an extra 2% at the retail point of sale.

In South Dakota, we have 34 911 dispatch centers.

The fee has been set at $.75, per phone line, per month, since 1989. This year, South Dakota leads other states by imposing an increase for more funding.

Many of South Dakota's centers are using technology from the 1970s and 1980s. Ted Rufledt, chair of the 911 Coordination Board, says as technology changes, more funding dollars are important to upgrade the 911 centers.

"Nobody likes paying taxes but this is one of those fees I think people understand the importance of and are supportive of. We're excited to move forward and we appreciate the support from the Legislature and have a lot of work to do," Ted Rufledt Jr. Said.

The $1.25 will only be in effect for about 6 years. Over the next two or three years, the state hopes to make big changes with 911 centers. In 2018, they plan to take the surcharge back down to $1.

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