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Federal Communications Commission
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This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action. See MCI v. FCC. 515 F 2d 385 (D.C. Circ 1974).

September 19, 2001

Michael Balmoris 202-418-0253


Washington, D.C. - The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) today voted to approve Verizon's application to provide in-region, interLATA, or long distance, service originating in Pennsylvania. Approval of Verizon's application promises substantial benefits for the state's consumers in the form of enhanced competition in both the local and long distance markets. The Commission, applying the same standard it has developed and applied over the last several long distance applications, has now approved seven states for in-region, long distance service.

With the Telecommunications Act of 1996, Congress envisioned fundamental, pro-competitive changes in the telecommunications markets by making a Bell Operating Company's (BOC) entry into the long distance market subject to the BOC first opening its local service monopoly to competition. A BOC satisfies this contingency by demonstrating compliance with section 271 of the 1996 Act. After a BOC files a section 271 long distance application with the Commission, the Commission has 90 days to determine whether a BOC has taken the statutorily required steps to open its local telecommunications markets to competition, including compliance with the 1996 Act's section 271 14-point "competitive checklist."

Since the passage of the 1996 Act, the FCC has denied five long distance applications, and now has approved applications to provide in-region, long distance service into seven states. Additionally, four applications have been withdrawn. A summary of all section 271 applications can be accessed at the following FCC web page:

Following is a summary of the competitive activity for Pennsylvania:

  • Competing carriers serve more than one million lines, one-third of which are residential lines.

  • Competing carriers serve more than 600,000 local lines over their own facilities.

  • Competing carriers serve more than 385,000 unbundled loops, and more than 160,000 lines through resale.

The Commission emphasizes that Verizon must continue to comply with the section 271 checklist requirements, and the Commission has a number of enforcement tools at its disposal, including imposing penalties or suspension of approval.

Action by the Commission September 19, 2001, by Memorandum Opinion and Order (FCC 01-269). Chairman Powell and Commissioners Abernathy and Martin; and Commissioner Copps dissenting and issuing a statement.


Docket No.: CC 01-138

Common Carrier Bureau Staff Contact: Robert Tanner at 202-418-1580.

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