State Commends Bell Atlantic for 'Excellent' Service in Four New York City Areas

State Commends Bell Atlantic for 'Excellent' Service in Four
New York City Areas

PSC Awards Commendation for Service Provided in Midtown
Manhattan, Southern Manhattan, Northern Manhattan/The Bronx
and Queens During 1998

March 16, 1999


Mark Marchand ,

NEW YORK -- The New York Public Service Commission (PSC) today
awarded Bell Atlantic four commendations for providing "excellent"
service in midtown Manhattan, southern Manhattan, northern
Manhattan/The Bronx and Queens during 1998.

The commendations, awarded to four Bell Atlantic divisions serving
different areas of New York City, are part of an annual PSC program
under which local telephone companies in New York receive recognition
when they meet a tough service standards for customer trouble reports and

"From Grand Concourse in The Bronx to Queens Boulevard to Wall
Street, Bell Atlantic continually strives to provide the best service to all
our customers -- regardless of where they live," said Paul Crotty, Bell
Atlantic group president for New York and Connecticut. "I thank the
Public Service Commission for this recognition and my heartfelt
congratulations go to all the

Bell Atlantic men and women who work night and day -- often under
difficult circumstances -- to provide customers with the best possible

Last year, Bell Atlantic received three similar commendations from the
PSC for the service the company provided in midtown Manhattan,
southern Manhattan and Queens during 1997. The addition of a fourth
commendation for northern Manhattan and The Bronx this year, Crotty
said, indicates the company's service improvement processes continue to
deliver dividends.

"The four PSC commendations this year, along with results from myriad
other service measurements we face each month, quarter and year in New
York City and throughout New York State shows that what the company
and its employees are doing is working," said Arnold Eckelman, Bell
Atlantic president and chief operating officer-consumer. "And we are not
stopping here. We will continue to invest in our local telephone network
and we will continue to find ways to deliver even better service to
consumers and business customers."

During 1997 and 1998, Bell Atlantic invested about $3.2 billion in the
telephone network that serves New Yorkers. Today, New York is served
by one of the most advanced telephone networks in the country. Bell
Atlantic has deployed more than 900,000 miles of fiber-optic cable
systems throughout the state. In addition, the company last year
completed the conversion of all 568 call-routing centers from Buffalo to
Long Island to the latest digital technology.

The improved results also follow the addition of some 3,000 service-
related jobs in New York during the last two years and the implementation
of improved service-delivery processes.

To earn PSC commendations, local New York telephone companies must
have 4.2 or less trouble reports per 100 telephone lines in at least 95
percent of a geographic area. The overall trouble report rate throughout all
of New York State, in fact, is currently about 2 troubles per 100
[lines. Also, these same areas must have fewer than 0.5 customer
complaints to the PSC per 1,000 telephone lines.

The targets for the commendations are above and beyond the thousands of
monthly, quarterly and annual targets Bell Atlantic must meet under the
Performance Regulation Plan adopted by the PSC in 1995. This seven-
year plan contains some of the toughest service quality standards in the
country. The plan also requires Bell Atlantic to pay rebates to customers
when targets in specific geographic areas are missed.

Bell Atlantic is at the forefront of the new communications and
information industry. With more than 42 million telephone access lines
and 8.6 million wireless customers worldwide, Bell Atlantic companies
are premier providers of advanced wireline voice and data services, market
leaders in wireless services and the world's largest publishers of directory
information. Bell Atlantic companies are also among the world's largest
investors in high-growth global communications markets, with operations
and investments in 23 countries.