03.08.2001|Corporate

AT&T's Latest Antic Defies Common Sense

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BACKGROUND -- AT&T today asked the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) to further delay its consideration of the wrongful split

of Verizon in the state. In doing so, AT&T cites a study conducted by its perennial hired gun Lee Selwyn. The following response should be attributed to

Harry Mitchell, Verizon director-media relations:

"It's ludicrous that AT&T is playing such desperate games with the PUC expected to decide this issue within two weeks. AT&T has had ample

opportunity to weigh in on this issue over more than a year. AT&T had twice as much time as Verizon to prepare its case. And, every time Verizon asked

that the schedule be extended, AT&T violently opposed our request. Now it wants to slide in an unverifiable, duct-tape study at the eleventh hour. This is

an obvious delaying tactic by AT&T, and the PUC should reject it outright.

"AT&T has already stated on the record it will cost hundreds of millions of dollars for AT&T to get established in Pennsylvania. Now

AT&T produces a study by a person - who has parroted AT&T's position for years - that says Verizon can cleave its Pennsylvania operations in two

for a mere $41 million. It simply defies common sense.

"AT&T, after one management pratfall after another, wants the PUC to bail it out by hampering its competitors and protecting it from competition.

That's a shameful grab for corporate welfare and reflects AT&T's philosophy of 'The Consumer Be Damned.'

"The commission should deep-six this desperate ploy from AT&T."

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