LANSING, Mich. - Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox has reached another settlement over telephone rates, announcing it Monday as a "victory for Michigan consumers."

The settlement lowers and freezes the rates of Verizon's Call Plan 100 and Value Pak 100 plan until July 1, 2009. Their rates were lowered by 80 cents a month, creating annual savings of $250,000, Cox said.

Verizon had sought a $1.20 monthly increase, but Cox challenged it. The Call Plan 100 was created by a telecommunications law in November and is the last plan regulated by the state's Public Service Commission.

Cox's settlement was reached with the American Associate for Retired Persons.

"I applaud AARP, Verizon and the MPSC staff for working hard to settle this matter," Cox said. "This will especially help seniors and low-income customers. I also encourage all consumers, especially those on fixed incomes, to look into this plan if you make less than 100 calls a month. This plan could save consumers real money."

The settlement must be approved by the MPSC. Cox has intervened in more than 120 utility cases in front of the commission and claims his actions from 2003-06 have saved ratepayers $1.78 billion in increases.

He reached a similar settlement with AT&T in March.

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