FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
News media information 202/418-0500
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
March 4, 2003
NEWS MEDIA CONTACT:|
David Fiske (202) 418-0513
"Under the terms of a consent decree released today, Verizon Communications agreed to pay $5.7 million to the U.S. Treasury after admitting to violations of the 1996 Telecommunications Act.
"Today's action affirms our commitment to maintaining the existing, rigorous standards for BOC entry into the long distance market. It likewise demonstrates the Commission's commitment to deterring companies from entering that market prematurely.
"On five separate occasions from January through July 2002, Verizon unlawfully marketed long distance services originating in its local service region. The 1996 Act allowed the regional Bell companies (BOCs) to enter the long distance markets only after satisfying a number of market-opening conditions and receiving Commission approval.
"As the Commission moves to complete its competition policy rulemakings, enforcement will take center stage. Whether in consent decrees or through formal Commission action, we will remain vigilant in exposing anti-competitive behavior that violates the Act. This action is another significant step forward in furtherance of the Commission's enforcement agenda.
"This investigation highlights the dedication and professionalism found in the Commission's Enforcement Bureau. I congratulate them for their good work."