Bell Atlantic Prepared For Local Competition

Bell Atlantic Prepared For Local Competition

August 6, 1997

Media contacts:

Michel Daley



Background: Today, PEPCO and RCN Corporation announced they have

formed a joint venture that will compete with Bell Atlantic to provide

local telephone service in Washington, D.C. The venture will provide

local, long distance, Internet and value-added services, like Caller

ID, to residential customers. The following statement should be

attributed to Bell Atlantic - Washington President and CEO William

Freeman in response to today's announcement.

"We are not at all surprised by today's announcement. This is exactly

what the Telecommunications Act intended, and we have been preparing

to compete for some time.

"While a company like MCI masks its business failures by accusing us

of impeding competition and protecting our monopoly, and then drags

its feet when it comes to entering local markets and serving

residential customers, other firms are finding ways to compete with us

to provide a full array of services to residential consumers.

"Bell Atlantic's recent commitments to the FCC demonstrate that we

have the most progressive approach in the country to opening local

markets to competition. Today's announcement is yet another example

of why we should now be allowed to provide long distance services."