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BOISE -- Idaho's regulated phone companies now have longer to respond to outages and won't face financial penalties for taking too long to get lines working again.

The Idaho Public Utilities Commission voted 2-1 Tuesday on new rules, with commissioners Paul Kjellander and Mack Redford voting for the settlement that helps companies like CenturyLink Inc.

Commissioner Marsha Smith opposed the pact.

Historically, regulated phone companies had 24 hours to restore weekend outages.

Companies that missed the deadline had to credit affected customers with a month of basic local service.

Now, companies have 48 hours to respond to weekday outages, more time for weekend outages, and they'll no longer have to credit customers for missed deadlines.

CenturyLink originally sought to be exempted entirely, arguing that unregulated wireless companies aren't held to the standard.

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