Last updated: February 21, 2008 - 11:27am
FCC GRANTS TRANSFER OF CONTROL OF VERIZON'S NORTHERN NEW ENGLAND OPERATIONS TO FAIRPOINT
[SOURCE: Federal Communications Commission]
The Federal Communications Commission has approved the sale some Verizon holdings to FairPoint Communications. FCC Commissioner Michael Copps dissented from the decision saying that the residents of Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont deserve high quality, affordable broadband and telecommunications service. He said, "In weighing the public interest benefits of this transaction, I believe it is incumbent on the Commission to determine whether the applicants' proposals are in fact speculative or real. As Larry Cohen, President of the Communications Workers of America, advised, those reviewing the transaction in the states did not "accept FairPoint's and Verizon's stated promises. Instead, they subjected the Applicants' projections, assumptions and statements to rigorous analysis. Consequently, the regulatory agencies in these states have a comprehensive record from which to reach a decision. We expect nothing less from the Federal Communications Commission." Disappointingly, the Commission did not heed this advice and gave little credence to the concerns raised in the record." Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein also dissented saying, "We hear so much about promoting broadband deployment, but here the Commission has a specific opportunity to promote the public interest and fails to take any concrete steps to ensure that the consumers of Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire will not be deprived. There are no binding commitments, no reports to monitor progress, and no commitment to oversight. Instead, we leave these issues to the state commissions. Fortunately, our colleagues in the state commissions are well positioned to grapple with these questions, but it is clear that this Commission did not intend to meaningfully address these issues."
* Commissioner Copps
* Commissioner Adelstein
* FCC Ruling on Verizon-FairPoint Deal Fails to Protect Interests of Consumers
The decision by the Federal Communications Commission to approve the sale of Verizon Communications telephone access lines to FairPoint Communications ahead of the final determinations by regulators in Vermont and New Hampshire is unfortunate, the Communications Workers of America said.