House Approves Bill to Stop Robocalls

December 4, 2019
Press Release

Washington, DC – U.S. Representative Mike Doyle (D-PA) announced that the House of Representatives approved bipartisan legislation to stop unwanted robocalls today by a vote of 417-3.

“Americans are plagued by nonstop robocalls – and today, we took a significant step forward to bringing that to an end,” Congresssman Doyle observed. “This legislation is the bipartisan, bicameral result of negotiations with industry and public interest stakeholders. It’s a strong bill, and I believe it will help to seriously reduce the onslaught of spam robocalls Americans face. It’s a great accomplishment for the 116th Congress – and a huge victory for consumers across the country.”

S. 151, the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act, would:

  • Require carriers to offer call-authentication technology to consumers and small businesses—in rural and urban America—at no additional charge;
  • Allow phone carriers to opt consumers into robocall blocking services with no additional charge;
  • Give the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) the ability to step up enforcement actions against unlawful robocalls with a longer statute of limitations and increased fines in certain cases;
  • Push the Department of Justice to bring more criminal prosecutions against criminal robocallers;
  • Require the FCC to work to stop one-ring scams;
  • Help the FCC and responsible carriers traceback and cutoff suspect phone companies that are responsible for sending vast numbers of unlawful robocalls; and
  • Protect patients, doctors and hospitals from unlawful robocalls.

The TRACED Act also included provisions of H.R. 3375, the Stopping Bad Robocalls Act, which Congressman Doyle, the Chairman of the Communications and Technology Subcommittee, introduced with Committee Chairman Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Ranking Member Greg Walden (R-OR), and Subcommittee Ranking Member Bob Latta (R-OH). These provisions would require the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to adopt critical consumer protections, require all carriers to allow the blocking of calls in a reasonable manner without an extra charge, implement a new technology to make sure that caller-ID information is appropriately authenticated with no additional line item charge for consumers on their bill, and more.

Click HERE for bill text.

Click HERE for a section-by-section summary.

Click HERE for video of the speech Congressman Doyle delivered on the House Floor today in support of this bill.