Meetinghouse Phone Service

Discussions around standard phones and phone service in meetinghouses and what the future of meetinghouse telephones should hold
cartermr
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Meetinghouse Phone Service

Postby cartermr » Tue Apr 09, 2013 5:52 pm

I've been trying for 8 months to get the "land" line in the clerks office fixed to no avail. I've spoken to the building rep, stake rep, agent bishop and no one seems to be able to get it repaire.

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Re: Meetinghouse Phone Service

Postby russellhltn » Tue Apr 09, 2013 6:04 pm

Do you know where the problem is? If the fault is in the building, it may fall to FM group. If the problem is outside of the building, then it's the phone company's job to fix it.
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Mikerowaved
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Re: Meetinghouse Phone Service

Postby Mikerowaved » Tue Apr 09, 2013 10:23 pm

cartermr wrote:I've been trying for 8 months to get the "land" line in the clerks office fixed to no avail.

What needs to be fixed on it? Noisy? Cuts out? Dead?
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Re: Meetinghouse Phone Service

Postby lajackson » Wed Apr 10, 2013 10:52 am

cartermr wrote:I've been trying for 8 months to get the "land" line in the clerks office fixed to no avail. I've spoken to the building rep, stake rep, agent bishop and no one seems to be able to get it repaire.

Under the current policy as I understand it, this is the responsibility of the stake, although the FM Group is usually willing to step in if the interior wiring needs replacing.

Troubleshoot it as you would at home, depending on the problem. If there is no dial tone, see if the incoming line works at the demarcation point (probably the closet where all the phone lines come into the building and are split out to the various offices). Anything outside of the demarc should be fixed by the phone company. Anything inside should be fixed by the stake.

If the stake clerk is not sure how to help, ask him for the trouble number and permission to report the problem on the line. The phone company will test the line to the building, and that may solve the problem. If the problem is due to bad or old wiring within the building, you will have a bigger challenge and will need to coordinate with the clerk and others.

Eight months is a long time. I used to tell the stake clerk that if the phone line was not working, I would not be able to send in my monthly report. But that does not work very well any more, sorry.

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johnshaw
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Re: Meetinghouse Phone Service

Postby johnshaw » Wed Apr 10, 2013 11:52 am

As a stake clerk, I was dumbfounded to learn that the FM didn't do phone lines (only because they wouldn't respond to my requests) - there isn't anything anywhere that I have been shown... just so weird to me.

I've just taken to keeping a line checker/tester in my car and a portable wired phone to 'check for dialtone'. Phone lines are 2 wires so it is not all that complicated. When wards have moved out or changed offices, etc... I just go back to the punch down and change the wires to the right place.

Many I wish I could get paid or at least provided a tax incentive for the value of my time... it is crazy to me that FM doesn't do this.
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Re: Meetinghouse Phone Service

Postby aebrown » Wed Apr 10, 2013 12:30 pm

lajackson wrote:Under the current policy as I understand it, this is the responsibility of the stake, although the FM Group is usually willing to step in if the interior wiring needs replacing.

That's interesting. When we've had issues with land lines, I've always assumed that it was the responsibility of the FM group. So I've sent these issues to the FM group through the PFR, and the FM group has dealt with them. I've never heard of any pushback that it wasn't their responsibility, and they have taken care of the problems promptly. I don't know whether the FM group handled the issues directly or worked with the phone company, but I've always considered it a blessing that I didn't have to know.

I don't know if policies are different for my FM group from those who are reporting that the FM group can't or won't handle such issues, but I'm a bit surprised that this wouldn't be an FM group responsibility everywhere. Oh well, I'm getting used to surprises.

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Re: Meetinghouse Phone Service

Postby russellhltn » Wed Apr 10, 2013 12:32 pm

lajackson wrote:Anything outside of the demarc should be fixed by the phone company. Anything inside should be fixed by the stake.


That depends. In some cases, the phone company might be responsible for all phone wiring. I would imagine it depends on the rules and regs for POTS phone service in your area as well as what the contract is between the phone company and the church.

But if the church is responsible for the internal phone wiring, then I'd expect the FM group would be responsible for hiring the contractor to fix it. If FM tries to duck that, then I'd say it's something for the SP/FM Group/Area Authority to hash out.
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Re: Meetinghouse Phone Service

Postby lajackson » Wed Apr 10, 2013 12:37 pm

JohnShaw wrote:As a stake clerk, I was dumbfounded to learn that the FM didn't do phone lines

I keep forgetting, as well, and usually call them. Our FM Group is cooperative and usually willing to help, especially when they have folks in the area of the building that are better able to meet the phone company when necessary, as opposed to my having to travel an hour from work across town to provide access.

Our method for extracting that cooperation is a bit devious. But they have their phone lines they like to keep in operation, and we have ours, so we usually have found it best to work together.

Most of our problems are related to outside lines from the phone company that affect all of us. And they really prefer to run inside lines when necessary, because they are able to do a much better job of it than we are.

But for now, the stake bills our lines to the Church and gets reimbursed. The FM Group has to budget for their lines, which is a little bit trickier under the current financial environment.

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Re: Meetinghouse Phone Service

Postby russellhltn » Wed Apr 10, 2013 1:34 pm

If the ward or stake is paying the phone company, then I can see where the FM group wants that unit to report the problem to the phone company. Otherwise the Telco is likely to say something like "who are you?"

"He who pays" is automatically recognized. Everyone else has to be somehow added to the account as an authorized person.
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Re: Meetinghouse Phone Service

Postby lajackson » Wed Apr 10, 2013 3:24 pm

russellhltn wrote:If the ward or stake is paying the phone company, then I can see where the FM group wants that unit to report the problem to the phone company. Otherwise the Telco is likely to say something like "who are you?"

"He who pays" is automatically recognized. Everyone else has to be somehow added to the account as an authorized person.

You would think so, but the reason the FM Group helped us last time is because only a person from "What is FM Group? Are you FM Group? Do you know what that means?" was allowed on the telephone account to authorize the dispatch of a technician. I decided not to lie.

Stake paid the bill, but the FM Group had installed the phone, and dispatching a technician meant someone would pay if the problem was not outside the demarcation point.

Why did the FM Group install the phone? Because it was for an alarm system for a building addition, and the city would not provide the occupancy permit without the alarm system working and able to phone home.

Should the stake be paying that phone bill? I think not. But we do need a place for the three units to meet each week.

(And that is one of the reasons I think it all ought to be consolidated.)


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