Payphone Service Providers Enforcement  

Payphone Service Providers Enforcement History

Pursuant to a settlement agreement approved by D.90-06-018, the Payphone Service Providers Enforcement (PSPE) program was established to ensure that payphone consumer safeguards set forth in the tariffs for the service territories of Pacific Bell (now known as AT&T) and GTE (now known as Verizon) are being followed. These consumer safeguards included signage requirements, rate caps for intraLocal Access and Transport Area (intraLATA), interLocal Access and Transport Area (interLATA), and directory assistance calls within California. Compliance with these consumer safeguards is enforced by actual inspections of the payphones and by advising the local telephone companies to disconnect those payphones not in compliance with their respective tariffs.

As a consequence of enactment of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and of implementing orders of the Federal Communications Commission in FCC Docket No. 96-128, local exchange carriers have implemented new arrangements whereby their payphone operations subscribe to the same tariffed exchange access line services to which independent PSPs subscribe, subjecting the carriers' payphone operations to the same obligations that apply to independent PSPs. In the context of this important development, the Commission, through Resolution T-16181, restated the duties and responsibilities of the PSPE Committee.

Payphone Service Providers Committee

The Payphone Service Providers Enforcement (PSPE) is administered by the Commission through SED. The PSPE Committee acts as an advisory to SED and was funded by a portion of the monthly surcharge applied on all payphone access lines in the state. On June 12, 2008, Commission Decision 08-06-020 eliminated the payphone enforcement surcharge. However, the Commission still requires the monthly reporting of payphone location and owner information. 

Payphone Service Providers Committee Goals

The goals of the PSPE Committee are to:

  • educate PSPs on the rules and regulations the Commission has established so that PSPs can comply with these requirements;
  • make recommendations regarding the enforcement of Commission established rules and regulations set forth in the tariffs of California telephone utilities and/or directed by Commission decision; and
  • educate consumers on matters related to payphone services.

Payphone Service Providers Complaints

To report a pay telephone that is not in compliance with consumer safeguards adopted by the Commission, please contact PSPE Committee at:

PSPE Committee
California Public Utilities Commission
505 Van Ness Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94102

A hard copy of Commission decisions/orders can be obtained for a fee by calling 415-703-2045. Questions about this program should be directed to Brian Hom by phone at 415-703-2696 or by e-mail to

Immigration Guide