Texas has recently been one step ahead of the rest of the country in telecommunications, passing major telecom reform legislation in both 1995 and 2005. Thanks to a bill passed by the 79th Legislature—SB 5—local telephone service for more than 15 million Texans was significantly deregulated as of January 1, 2006. This was a major step forward in reducing costs and bringing new technologies and services to millions of Texans.