July 1, 2001
L.A. Loves a Loophole
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North Dakota Approves Certificates in Local Exchange Site
The North Dakota Public Service Commission (PSC) has approved new certificates for local telephone service for 68 exchanges sold by U S WEST Communications, Inc. to a group of independent telephone companies in the state. The PSC had prepared to perform a full examination of the $137.5-million sale, when the state legislature passed a new law eliminating its jurisdiction over the disposition of tangible assets by U S WEST. Fulfilling the balance of its responsibilities, the PSC reviewed and found adequate the financial and technical capability of the buyers to ensure continuing service in the purchased exchanges. The PSC also approved agreements between U S WEST, the buyers, and other interested parties that call for a
two-year rate freeze by the buyers as well as a five-year cap on intrastate switched access charges. Re U S West Communications, Inc. Case No. PU-314-94-688, May 17, 1995 (N.D. P.S.C.).
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