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News Release
 
Commission Orders U S WEST To Track T-1 Installations
 
September 23, 1999 (1999-041)
 
Contacts: Ron Eachus, Chairman, 503 378-6611; Roger Hamilton, Commissioner 503 378-6611; Joan H. Smith, Commissioner, 503 378-6611; Ron Karten, Public Information Officer, 503 378-8962
 
Salem, OR – As part of an investigation into U S WEST’s service quality, the Oregon Public Utility Commission (OPUC) has ordered the company to start keeping track of T-1 lines, which move information digitally over 24 channels simultaneously. Larger customers, often internet providers, need T-1 lines for their businesses.
 
Comments from public meetings held by OPUC around the state indicate a universal problem with the company’s installations of T-1 service. Customers voiced concerns about unrealistic delays in obtaining T-1 service and sometimes the outright refusal of U S WEST to provide the service.
 
"The inability to get a T-1 is an inability to expand the network and services and when U S WEST says, ‘no,’ it puts communities at a disadvantage," Commission Chairman Ron Eachus said. "What’s even more troubling is that U S WEST has its own internet service and it can hamper potential competitors by not supplying them with adequate lines."
 
The Commission previously opened investigations, which are ongoing, into the company’s construction budget and the status of older analog switches that the company had not replaced as planned.
 
Although the Commission did not propose to create a new standard for the timely installation of T-1 lines, it did require that installations be tracked. Those installations not completed within 60 days (or within a mutually agreed-upon time) would be categorized as "failed to meet."
 
The Commission order requires the company to provide the Commission with a list of those wire centers that can presently support T-1 service. In addition, the company will report to the Commission monthly tallies for each of its 77 local wire centers, of T-1 service requests, installations, rejections, and "failed-to-meet" installation commitments.
 
Under the order, multiple delays at specific wire centers require the company to provide an explanation for the problem and to offer steps to correct the problem.
 
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