The matter raised by the Deputy is not an area in which I, as Minister, have a statutory function. The use and display of telephone numbers such as 1850 and 1890 numbers is an operational and customer service issue for each individual public body including Government Departments. My own Department operates both an 1890 lo-call option and a standard 01-6782000 access code.
The Commission for Communications Regulation (ComReg) manages and administers the National Numbering Scheme on behalf of the State. The Deputy may be interested in a Decision by ComReg in December last year to introduce measures to address consumer confusion and high costs of using Non-Geographic Numbers. Details of this Decision D15/18 (18/106) are available on ComReg’s website at www.comreg.ie.
ComReg is statutorily independent in the exercise of its functions and is accountable directly to the Oireachtas in accordance with section 34 of the Communications Regulation Act 2002.