Kentucky Toughens DNC Restrictions

Kentucky Gov. Paul Patton signed a bill Wednesday that will toughen the state's do-not-call list law by removing many exemptions previously available for industries that engage in telemarketing.

Previously, Kentucky's DNC statute contained 19 exemptions, leading many critics to complain that the state's DNC list lacked teeth. Some of the exempted industries include nonprofits, investment and real estate brokers, insurance agents, newspaper, magazine and cable subscription marketers, among others.

Under the law signed by Patton, the only exemptions provided are for bill collection calls, business-to-business calls, and calls to consumers with whom a company has existing relationships. Those who violate the list are subject to fines of up to $5,000 per violation.

The bill signed by Patton also contains language about a “zero-call” list. The zero-call list was conceived last year and was originally meant to allow senior citizens to block all telemarketing calls, including those that were otherwise exempt from the list.

However, under the bill passed this week, the so-called zero-call list is available to all residents, and appears to include the exemptions for collections, BTB and existing business relationships.

Registration is free to consumers. The state also provides the list free to businesses.

The bill calls for the state to link the list to the national DNC list currently being developed by the Federal Trade Commission.

A spokesman for Patton did not return phone calls for comment yesterday. Calls to the office of Kentucky Attorney General Ben Chandler, a supporter of tougher DNC list laws in the state, also were not returned.

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