|Missourians still have to put up with computer-generated robocalls thanks to actions of a House utilities committee that earlier in the session removed provisions for the ban passed by a Senate vote. But both the Senate and House recently agreed on legislation that would add cellphone numbers to the state's No Call list...with the usual caveat, of course, of "most solicitations but not all." The legislation is now on Gov. Jay Nixon's desk for his expected signature. If he signs the bill sponsored in the House by Rep. Todd Richardson (R-154), it will take effect August 28, 2012.
According to a House summary, "currently, the definition of 'telephone solicitation' is any voice communication over a telephone line from a live operator, through the use of ADAD equipment or by other means for the purpose of encouraging the purchase or rental of, or investment in, property, goods, or services but does not include specified communications. HB 1549 changes it to any voice, facsimile, short messaging service (SMS), or multimedia messaging service MMS) for that purpose and prohibits a telemarketer from sending these communications to a telephone number on the No-call List."
The federal government already includes cellphone numbers on its no-call list. The new legislation was encouraged by the office of Attorney General Chris Koster that maintains the state's version of the telemarketing black-out list. Reportedly, as many as 200 complaints were being registered each week by cellphone owners.
According to Koster's office, there currently are more than 2.7 million Missouri phone lines registered on the residential No Call list. To verify whether a phone number is on the list go here. To check on the accuracy of reporting or to add a new number to the list phone 1-866-289-9633 or go here.
To register your home or mobile phone number on the National Do Not Call Registry go here. As is similar to state regulations, placing a number on the National Do Not Call Registry will not stop calls on behalf of political organizations, charities, telephone surveyors (but not those also trying to sell something) and companies with whom one has an existing business relationship. However, if a third-party telemarketer is calling on behalf of a charity, a consumer may ask not to receive any more calls from, or on behalf of, that specific charity. If a third-party telemarketer calls again on behalf of that charity, the telemarketer may be subject to a fine of up to $16,000.