01.03.1996Corporate

Brooks Fiber and Nynex sign co-carrier agreement

SPRINGFIELD, MA -- Brooks Fiber Communications and NYNEX have reached an interim agreement on terms for Brooks Fiber's interconnection with NYNEX's local exchange network in Massachusetts. The interim agreement will be filed with the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities (DPU). It is known as an interim agreement because it was reached while the DPU has been considering the terms and conditions under which competing carriers will interconnect. DPU orders will then supersede the interim agreement. By negotiating an interim agreement now, Brooks can begin its entry into competitive markets before the DPU docket is completed in mid-1996.

The agreement specifies the manner in which the Brooks and NYNEX networks will interconnect for the purpose of handing-off, or "terminating," local calls to one another, as well as the rates for reciprocal monetary compensation for such termination. The agreement also spells-out an interim "number portability" arrangement, which will allow customers to switch local carriers without having to switch local phone numbers. Switched services is the process of providing dial tone, call routing -- or switching -- individual calls on demand, metering those calls for billing purposes, and rendering billing.

"The NYNEX co-carrier agreement was the last major hurdle in providing local dial-tone in Springfield," said Robert J. Shanahan, vice president-northeast region, Brooks Fiber Communications. "We've built a state-of-the-art fiber-optic network in Springfield and ordered a state-of-the-art AT&T switch. We expect to introduce local telecommunications competition in Springfield in early 1996.

"The stage for local telecommunications competition was set way back in 1985," Shanahan added, "when the DPU announced it would permit unrestricted competition in Massachusetts telecommunications. As competitive service providers like Brooks ramp-up operations in Massachusetts markets, we'll bring new jobs, economic development, improvements in telecommunications service, and previously unimagined price pressures on the telecommunications services businesses use everyday."

In August, Brooks Fiber ordered a multi-million AT&T 5ESS-2000 switch to serve its Springfield network. Brooks Fiber also confirmed today that it is "on schedule" to provide competitive dial tone in the first quarter 1996.

Brooks Fiber is a leading provider of competitive local telecommunications services in intermediate-sized tier II and tier III U.S. cities. With networks installed or under development in 24 U.S. cities and mainland China, the Brooks family of companies is an international provider of local competitive telecommunications.

The company provides its business customers with the most advanced and reliable high-capacity voice, video, data and other enhanced services on the market. Brooks Fiber is headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri.

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