The Eighth Circuit held today that a local call remains a local call even after it goes through a long distance network. Alma Communications Co. v. Missouri Pub. Serv. Comm’n, No. 06-2401 (8th Cir. June 12, 2007).
Alma Communications and other local telephone companies disputed T-Mobile’s entitlement to "reciprocal compensation" for local calls that started on land-line phones but ended on cell phones. The locals argued that their routing of the calls through a long distance carrier made them long distance calls. T-Mobile claimed that local calls don’t lose their local character regardless of the routing. T-Mobile won.