The break-up plan being considered by the state Public Utility Commission (PUC) would require Verizon to establish separate wholesale and retail businesses in order to continue to provide phone service in the state.
The poll also found that Pennsylvanians oppose the breakup because they are satisfied with the level of competition in the market and they are happy with Verizon and the services it provides. Fully 90 percent of Verizon's customers said they were satisfied with the services they received from Verizon. On the other hand, only 13 percent said they were satisfied with the level of competition in the cable television market.
"This poll shows that the confusion, potential for higher phone bills and job losses caused by this proposed breakup are unacceptable to the people of Pennsylvania," said Dan Whelan, president of Verizon Pennsylvania. "In particular, seniors are the most opposed to the proposal because they have seen the confusion and higher prices caused by previous government imposed breakups and they understand how damaging disruptions in service could be."
With 45 percent opposing the break-up plan and 29 percent either undecided or having no opinion, only 25 percent supported the idea.
By a 26-point margin, voters ages 35 and older oppose the Verizon breakup plan (48 per cent oppose -- 22 per cent favor) and a majority of seniors oppose a decision to breakup Verizon (50 per cent oppose -- 22 per cent favor).
"We are proud that this poll shows our customers have such a favorable impression of us, but we know there is more work to be done," said Whelan. "We know that if structural separation is required by the Pennsylvania PUC, phone bills could go up, jobs could be lost and customers would be confused, making our job even harder and making Pennsylvania phone customers unhappy."
Public Opinion Strategies is one of the nation's leading public opinion research firms and is based in Alexandria, VA, with additional offices in Denver and Los Angeles.
The telephone survey of 600 likely voters in the state of Pennsylvania was conducted by Public Opinion Strategies for three nights from Feb. 27 to March 1. The margin of error for this survey is plus or minus four percent. The sample was drawn in proportion to voter registration figures in each county of the state.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with nearly 109 million access line equivalents and more than 27.5 million wireless customers. Verizon is also the world's largest provider of print and online directory information. A Fortune 10 company with approximately 260,000 employees and more than $63 billion in annual revenues, Verizon's global presence extends to 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com