Kari's Law passes U.S. Senate, heads to U.S. House for approval

Updated: Feb. 6, 2018 at 11:38 AM CST
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(KLTV) - United States Senators last night unanimously approved "Kari's Law," legislation that will require multi-line telephone systems to allow direct-dialing of 911 services.

The legislation now goes to the U.S. House, and if approved it will be going to the White House for President Donald Trump's signature or veto.

The bill, H.R 582, passed the Senate with one amendment attached, that the law will apply, "to a multi-line telephone system that is manufactured, imported, offered for first sale or lease, first sold or leased, or installed after the date that is 2 years after the date of the enactment of this Act."

The namesake of the bill, Kari Hunt, was murdered by her estranged husband in a Marshall hotel room in December 2013. Hunt's daughter, then 9 years old, attempted to dial 911 but was unable to reach an outside line because the multi-line phone required a "9" to be dialed first. Since then, Hank Hunt, her father, has worked to get laws passed at state and federal levels after promising his granddaughter that what happened to her will never happen to another child.

Separate versions of the bill were passed last year in the U.S. House and Senate, with a committee combining the two versions into a single bill.

"The bill that passed the Senate yesterday included an amendment with technical changes, so it will need to go back to the House for passage before going to the President's desk," said an aide in Senator John Cornyn's office.

Six states, including Texas, have already been passed a similar law.

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