New York State Approves Bell Atlantic - GTE Merger

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New York State Approves Bell Atlantic - GTE Merger

March 16, 1999


Susan Kraus, Bell Atlantic
Peter Thonis, GTE

BACKGROUND -- The New York State Public Service Commission
today unanimously approved the merger of Bell Atlantic and GTE. The
two companies announced on July 28, 1998, that they had agreed to a
merger of equals, and state and federal utility regulators are currently
considering the public interest benefits. To date, including New York, 24
state public utility commissions have either approved the GTE-Bell
Atlantic merger or declined to assert jurisdiction over it.

The following response should be attributed to Paul A. Crotty, Bell
Atlantic's group president for New York and Connecticut.

We are gratified that the PSC has recognized the public interest benefits of
the Bell Atlantic-GTE merger, which will create the only top-tier global
telecommunications company headquartered in New York. This is
another important step in the state-by-state merger review process.

It is especially satisfying to receive this approval on the very day that
commissioners awarded us with a commendation for excellent service in
New York City. Through the merger of Bell Atlantic and NYNEX, we
were able to use the best practices of both companies to improve our
service, and we look forward to further improvements as we combine
operations with GTE.

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