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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
South Dakota Public Utilities Commission
Contact: Pamela A. Bonrud or Bonnie Bjork
Phone Number: 605-773-3201
Date: June 27, 2003
TELEMARKETING "DO NOT CALL SIGN-UP" STARTS TODAY
South Dakota consumers can start signing up today to stop most telemarketing calls announces the Public Utilities Commission.
"Today is a landmark day for South Dakota consumers," says PUC Chairman Bob Sahr. "We are ecstatic that South Dakotans will soon have protection from the tidal wave of telemarketing calls."
"Telemarketing is a most intrusive and irritating method of solicitation and it is the area where I received the most complaints from consumers," adds PUC Vice Chairman Gary Hanson. "I am pleased to see South Dakota included as one of the first states in the nation to be able to sign up for the national register."
Sign-up is free. Consumers have two ways of registering their home telephone and personal cell phone numbers. One, they can call a toll free number, 1-888-382-1222, from the home or personal cell phones that they are registering. Two, they can register via the Internet at www.donotcall.gov. Through the Internet site, consumers can register both their home phone and personal cell phone numbers.
Because the PUC and the Federal Trade Commission have teamed together on the Do Not Call List, South Dakota consumers can register just once to be covered by both the national and statewide Do Not Call lists.
Details about the program, including answers to frequently asked questions are available at a PUC Web site: www.sddonotcall.com. If you have difficulties registering, please contact the PUC at 1-800-332-1782.
After the initial sign up period, telemarketers will have to obtain a copy of the register and then can not call telephone numbers on the list. It is expected that telemarketing calls will decrease beginning in October. Companies who call consumers after that date will be subject to a fine of up to $5,000 per violation. South Dakotans will be able to register complaints with the South Dakota PUC.