2013 - 2014 LEGISLATURE
April 25, 2013 - Introduced by Senators Tiffany,
Cowles, Olsen, Gudex, Petrowski
and Harsdorf, cosponsored by Representatives Ripp,
Brooks, Bies, T. Larson, Bernier, Murphy, Mursau, Czaja, Endsley, Sinicki,
Strachota, Hintz, A. Ott, Ohnstad, Spiros, Tranel, Jacque and Tittl.
Referred to Energy, Consumer Protection, and Government Reform.
1An Act to repeal
100.52 (1) (e) and 100.52 (2); to renumber
100.52 (3) (b) and 2
100.52 (9); to renumber and amend
100.52 (3) (a); to amend
20.115 (1) (im), 3
20.115 (8) (jm), 100.52 (4) (a) 2., 100.52 (4) (b) 1. and 100.55 (3) (b) 3.; to repeal
100.52 (9) (title); and to create
100.52 (1) (c), 100.52 (1) (fm), 5
100.52 (1m), 100.52 (4) (b) 3., 100.52 (8) and 100.52 (9) (a) of the statutes; 6relating to: the prohibition on telephone solicitations to residential customers,
7granting rule-making authority, and making an appropriation.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
Current law regulates "telephone solicitation," which is defined as the
unsolicited initiation of a telephone conversation or text message for the purpose of
encouraging the recipient of the telephone call or text message to purchase property,
goods, or services. Current law generally prohibits a telephone solicitor, or employee
or contractor of a telephone solicitor, from making a telephone solicitation to a
residential customer if the customer's landline or wireless telephone number is
included in a nonsolicitation directory maintained by the Department of Agriculture,
Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP), which lists residential customers who do
not wish to receive telephone solicitations. Current law exempts the following from
the prohibition: 1) telephone solicitations made by nonprofit organizations; 2)
telephone solicitations made in response to a recipient's request; and 3) telephone
solicitations made to current clients of the person selling property, goods, or services
that are the reason for the solicitation. Current law requires DATCP to promulgate
rules requiring that telephone solicitors register with DATCP and pay initial
registration and annual registration renewal fees to DATCP, which DATCP must use
for establishing and maintaining the nonsolicitation directory, as well as for
consumer protection, information, and education. Current law prohibits a telephone
solicitor who is not registered from requiring that employees or contractors make
telephone solicitations in this state. Current law also provides that if a residential
customer does not biennially renew his or her listing in the nonsolicitation directory,
DATCP must eliminate the customer's telephone number from the directory.
Federal law also regulates telephone solicitations by authorizing the Federal
Trade Commission (FTC) to prohibit deceptive and abusive telemarketing acts or
practices. Under that authority, the FTC has promulgated a regulation that, with
certain exceptions, prohibits a telemarketer from initiating a telephone call
encouraging the purchase of goods or services if the recipient's telephone number is
on a national "do-not-call" registry maintained by the FTC that consists of the
telephone numbers of persons who do not wish to receive such calls. One of the
exceptions applies to telemarketing calls to businesses. Federal law requires
telemarketers to pay annual fees in order to access the registry. The FTC allows a
person to add a landline or wireless telephone number to the registry through a
toll-free number or over the Internet. Under federal law, inclusion of a telephone
number in the registry is permanent and a person is not required to periodically
renew the inclusion. However, a person may remove a telephone number from the
registry and the FTC must periodically review the registry and remove telephone
numbers that have been disconnected or reassigned to another person.
This bill eliminates the state's nonsolicitation directory and instead prohibits
a telephone solicitor, or employee or contractor of a telephone solicitor, from making
a telephone solicitation, as defined under current state law, to a landline or wireless
telephone number that is included on a "state do-not-call registry," which the bill
defines as the portion of the national do-not-call registry that consists of telephone
numbers with Wisconsin area codes. The bill allows DATCP to cooperate with the
FTC to add telephone numbers that were in the state's nonsolicitation directory to
the national do-not-call registry. The bill's prohibition is subject to the same
exemptions as the prohibition under current state law. The bill requires DATCP to
publicize the procedures for a residential customer to add a telephone number to the
national do-not-call registry.
The bill also provides that the initial registration and annual registration
renewal fees that are paid by telephone solicitors must be used for DATCP's
administration and enforcement of the requirements applicable to telephone
solicitors, as well as for consumer protection, information, and education. The bill
allows DATCP to base the amount of a fee that a telephone solicitor must pay on a
methodology established by rule, in addition to basing the amount on the number of
telephone lines used by the telephone solicitor to make solicitations, which is the
basis allowed under current law. In addition, the bill requires that DATCP's rules
require a telephone solicitor to provide DATCP with proof that the telephone solicitor
has complied with federal law in obtaining copies or updated versions of the state
do-not-call registry. The proof must be provided upon initial registration and
annual renewal, as well as any other time upon DATCP's request. Finally, the bill
prohibits a telephone solicitor from using or possessing a copy or updated version of
the state do-not-call registry that the telephone solicitor has obtained in violation
of federal law.
For further information see the state fiscal estimate, which will be printed as
an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
20.115 (1) (im) of the statutes is amended to read:
(im) Consumer protection; telephone solicitor fees.
The amounts in 3
the schedule from telephone solicitor registration and registration renewal fees paid 4
under the rules promulgated under s. 100.52 (3) (a)
, for consumer protection and 5
consumer information and education.
20.115 (8) (jm) of the statutes is amended to read:
(jm) Telephone solicitation regulation.
All moneys received from 8
telephone solicitor registration and registration renewal fees paid under the rules 9
promulgated under s. 100.52 (3) (a)
not appropriated under sub. (1) (im) for 10establishing and maintaining the nonsolicitation directory under administering and
s. 100.52 (2)
100.52 (1) (c) of the statutes is created to read:
(c) "National do-not-call registry" means the national database 14
established by the federal trade commission under 47 USC 227
(c) (3) that consists 15
of telephone numbers of residential customers who object to receiving telephone 16
100.52 (1) (e) of the statutes is repealed.
100.52 (1) (fm) of the statutes is created to read:
(fm) "State do-not-call registry" means the portion of the national 2
do-not-call registry that consists of telephone numbers with Wisconsin area codes.
100.52 (1m) of the statutes is created to read:
100.52 (1m) National do-not-call registry.
The department may cooperate 5
with the federal trade commission to add telephone numbers included in the 6
nonsolicitation directory, as defined in s. 100.52 (1) (e), 2011 stats., to the national 7
100.52 (2) of the statutes is repealed.
100.52 (3) (a) of the statutes is renumbered 100.52 (3) and amended 10
100.52 (3) Registration of telephone solicitors.
The department shall 12
promulgate rules that require any telephone solicitor who requires an employee or 13
contractor to make a telephone solicitation to a residential customer in this state to 14
register with the department, obtain a registration number from the department, 15
and pay a an initial
registration fee and an annual registration renewal fee
to the 16
department. The amount of the registration fee shall be based on the cost of
17establishing the nonsolicitation directory, and the
amount that an individual 18
telephone solicitor is required to pay shall be based on the number of telephone lines 19
used by the telephone solicitor to make telephone solicitations or some other
20methodology established by the department by rule
. The rules shall also require a 21
telephone solicitor that registers with the department to pay an annual registration
22renewal fee to the department, at the time of initial registration, the time of annual
23renewal, and any other time upon request of the department, provide the department
24with proof that the telephone solicitor has complied with federal law in obtaining
25copies and updated versions of the state do-not-call registry
. The amount of the
1registration renewal fee fees
shall be based on the cost of maintaining the
2nonsolicitation directory amount required to administer and enforce this section and
3to provide the amounts appropriated under s. 20.115 (1) (im)
100.52 (3) (b) of the statutes is renumbered 100.52 (4) (d).
100.52 (4) (a) 2. of the statutes is amended to read:
(a) 2. Make a telephone solicitation to a residential customer if the
7nonsolicitation directory that is provided or made available to the telephone solicitor
8under sub. (2) (d) includes a listing for the residential customer
9that, at the time the solicitation is made, is listed on the state do-not-call registry
100.52 (4) (b) 1. of the statutes is amended to read:
(b) 1. Require an employee or contractor to make a telephone 12
solicitation to a person in this state unless the telephone solicitor is registered with 13
the department under the rules promulgated under sub. (3) (a)
100.52 (4) (b) 3. of the statutes is created to read:
(b) 3. Use or possess a copy or updated version of the state 16
do-not-call registry that the telephone solicitor has obtained in violation of federal 17
100.52 (8) of the statutes is created to read:
100.52 (8) Rules.
The department may promulgate rules to administer and 20
enforce this section.
100.52 (9) (title) of the statutes is repealed and recreated to read:
(title) Department duties.
100.52 (9) of the statutes is renumbered 100.52 (9) (b).
100.52 (9) (a) of the statutes is created to read:
(a) The department shall publicize the procedures for a residential 2
customer to add a telephone number to the national do-not-call registry.
100.55 (3) (b) 3. of the statutes is amended to read:
(b) 3. Knowingly or negligently utilizing information regarding 5
consumers who have made an election under 15 USC 1681b
(e) to be excluded from 6
prescreened consumer reports, or
who have registered their telephone numbers on 7
the national do-not-call registry as provided in 47 CFR 64.1200, or who are listed
8in the nonsolicitation directory under s. 100.52 (2)
(1) This act takes effect on the first day of the 4th month beginning after 11