Baltimore City government’s recently-renamed Department of Telecommunications is wrapping up a phone line modernization project that has saved $2.4 million for city government, and, in turn, taxpayers. That’s according to the City comptroller’s office, which oversees the department.
Through the project, the department has been identifying and reducing unused City telephone lines and circuits, which are also known as ghost lines. It’s part of a five-year effort to convert the city’s phone lines to Voice-over-Internet-Protocol phones from legacy landline telephone systems.
“For over 30 years, Verizon managed the phone lines in the City, but was not able to provide us with accurate data on where lines were actually installed,” said Simon Etta, director of telecommunications for the City of Baltimore. “With the conversion to VoIP in the City, we now have the flexibility to terminate these lines, update our internal records and stop paying for those we do not need.”