Get ready for a new charge on your CenturyLink bills. The carrier has announced that effective July 3, 2012, it will begin collecting an Access Recovery Charge (ARC) as authorized by the FCC. If you are like most customers, you probably have no idea what an ARC is, but don’t feel bad, it’s pretty much in the weeds. To be as concise as possible, the ARC is designed to offset part of an FCC-mandated reduction in the amount local exchange carriers, like CenturyLink, can charge long distance carriers for access to their local lines. The FCC required the rate reduction in November of 2011 in large part to achieve parity between in-state and interstate long distance service. To sum it up, customers of CenturyLink (and other carriers in the future) will have to pay a bit more.
CenturyLink will require most businesses to pay a surcharge of $.50 for single line business subscribers per line per month and $1.00 for multiline business subscribers per line per month. The ARC charges will be applied in a way similar to the SLC/CALC (Subscriber Line Charge/Calculation). Windstream and other carriers have announced that they will be adding the ARC starting next month as well.
For more information, view the ARC-FAQ