Topeka Kansas is preparing to loosen its regulation of AT&T;, the state's largest provider of local telephone service.
AT&T; spokesman Aaron Catlin said Tuesday that a deregulation bill approved by the Kansas Legislature will lead to investment and innovation in the state.
But critics believe the measure will lead to higher monthly bills for AT&T; customers who want only a single landline in their homes or a few landlines in their businesses.
After lawmakers approved it last week, the bill is now headed to Gov. Sam Brownback.
AT&T; will no longer face price caps for stand-alone, local landline service, though the bill says rates in rural areas can't rise above rates in urban areas.
Prices for so-called bundled services have been deregulated in Kansas since 2006.