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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 13, 1996
PENNSYLVANIA CONSUMER ADVOCATE WITHDRAWS
Philadelphia, PA -- The Pennsylvania Office of Consumer Advocate
(OCA) recently withdrew its court challenge of the Public Utility
Commission's (PUC) decision regarding Bell Atlantic's right to apply
for changes in basic telephone rates. In October, 1995, the PUC
reaffirmed a June, 1994, decision that Bell Atlantic could file for
rate adjustments as long as there is no increase in revenue to the
company. The OCA had gone to Commonwealth Court to overturn the
October, 1995, decision.
"We believe that the OCA did not have a case when this legal action
was filed," said William J. Mitchell, Bell Atlantic vice
president-external affairs. "They don't have a case today, and they
won't have a case in the future."
"It's time the consumer advocate stops creating confusion in
customers' minds. We need to move positively into the future where
competition will control prices rather than regulation," Mitchell
In January, 1996, Bell Atlantic proposed restructuring its
telecommunications rates in Pennsylvania as competition accelerates.
The proposal would change rates by increasing some and decreasing
others so that the net effect would be no change in revenues for Bell
Atlantic. Money-saving options would be available to all customers.
The filing has been suspended for investigation and hearing by the PUC.
A decision on the proposal is not expected until late in the year.
Bell Atlantic Corporation (NYSE: BEL) is at the forefront of the new
communications, entertainment and information industry. In the
mid-Atlantic region, the company is the premier provider of local
telecommunications and advanced services. Globally, it is one of the
largest investors in the high-growth wireless communication
marketplace. Bell Atlantic also owns a substantial interest in
Telecom Corporation of New Zealand and is actively developing
high-growth national and international business opportunities in all
phases of the industry.
for more information, contact:
- Sharon Shaffer, 215-963-6200
Shirley Risoldi, 412-633-5574