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LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB) -- A new area code, 364, will be used in the same parts of western Kentucky as the current 270 code.
Kentucky's Public Service Commission says it was looking at the option that would cause the least disruption for customers and the least cost for businesses. This is the first area code in Kentucky to be created by what's called an "overlay." Area code 270 was created in 1999 by splitting area code 502.
"This decision means that everyone who now has an area code 270 phone number can keep that number," PSC Chairman David Armstrong said. "The only thing that will change is that 10-digit dialing will be required for local calls beginning in early 2014."
The PSC says public comments supported the overlay overwhelmingly over the option of splitting the 270 area code. "Public opinion has shifted dramatically in the six years since the PSC last considered this matter," Armstrong said. "It appears that the public is much less concerned about 10-digit dialing than about the possibility of having to change phone numbers."
Wireless devices and, possibly, increased economic activity are said to be driving the demand.
From the Kentucky Public Service Commission:
TEN THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT KENTUCKY'S NEW AREA CODE
1. All current area code 270 numbers remain unchanged. Everyone with a 270 area code number can keep it. Nobody is required to change their area code or phone number.
2. The overlay affects both landline and wireless services.
3. Area code 364 will be overlaid on top of area code 270. That means that area codes 270 and 364 will occupy the same physical space beginning March 2014.
4. In order to distinguish between phone numbers with area code 270 and those with area code 364, 10-digit dialing will be required for all local calls within the overlay.
5. Ten-digit dialing also will be required for local calls into or out of the overlay in those areas that now allow seven-digit local calling across the area code 270 boundary.
6. Ten-digit dialing means dialing the area code before dialing the number itself – for example: 270-555-1212 or 364-555-1212.
7. Long-distance calls within the overlay will require 11-digit (1-plus) dialing, just as long distance calls to other area codes do now.
8. A transition period, known as permissive dialing, will begin on August 3, 2013 and end on January 31, 2014. During that time, local calls can be made using either seven-digit or 10-digit dialing.
9. On February 1, 2014, 10-digit dialing for local calls will become mandatory in the area code 270/364 territory.
10. Numbers with area code 364 may be distributed beginning March 3, 2014. Telecommunication service providers may continue to distribute 270 numbers for as long as they have any remaining in their inventories.
TIMELINE FOR AREA CODE 270
April 1999 Area code 270 takes effect after split from area code 502 – this gives Kentucky three area codes
June 2001 PSC petitions FCC for mandatory number pooling in area code 270.
July 2001 NANPA first suggests need for new area code in 270 territory
July 2006 NANPA update triggers PSC case for creation of new area code
May 2007 PSC decides to split area code 270 by creating area code 364 start date is set for April 2008
May 2007 FCC authorizes mandatory number pooling in area code 270
June 2007 PSC postpones split until July 2008 to assess impact of number pooling
Nov. 2007 PSC postpones split until January 2009
May 2008 PSC postpones split until April 2010
June 2009 PSC postpones split until January 2012
April 2010 NANPA says area code 270 no longer in jeopardy of number exhaustion
Aug. 2010 PSC suspends implementation of split and use of area code 364
Oct. 2010 NANPA update shows no need for new area code until late 2014
Dec. 2010 PSC rescinds decision to split area code 270
April 2012 NANPA tells PSC new area code will be needed by third quarter of 2014
Aug. 2012 PSC opens case to consider new area code options – telecommunications industry group recommends overlay
Sept. 2012 NANPA revises projected number exhaustion to first quarter of 2014
Dec. 2012 PSC selects overlay as relief option for area code 270
Feb. 2014 Mandatory 10-digit dialing begins in area code 270/364
March 2014 Area code 364 numbers may be distributed