New area code could be coming to 909 zone in Inland Empire

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A new area code could soon be added to cities served by the 909. That has local businesses worried about what that means for their existing numbers and advertising. (KABC)

A new area code could soon be added to cities served by the 909. That has local businesses worried about what that means for their existing numbers and advertising.

Today the California Public Utilities Commission held a meeting to help answer questions and concerns.

The new three-digit area code, which has yet to be determined, will be an overlay. This means existing 909 customers will be able to keep their numbers, but will require 909 users to dial one, the area code and number on future calls.

For local business owner Benjamin Lopez, it's a big relief. The current 909 number is part of his business's identity. Lopez says it could cost him financially to change the number out.

The proposed overlay will help avoid service disruption because the current reserve of 909 prefixes is running out.

That's something Lopez says can understand given our reliance on mobile technology.

"I get why we are running out of phone numbers. I have four numbers attached to my account," Lopez said. "I have my cellphone, my iPad, my gPad and additional lines. Not everyone has just one number these days."

There is no estimate on when the overlay will occur. This is the first of three public meetings the utility commission is holding.

Related Topics:
newsarea codecellphonebusinessPomonaLos Angeles CountySan Bernardino County
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