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AT&T ASKS PSC FOR ACCESS TO ALL SOUTH CAROLINA CALLING ZONES

 AT&T ASKS PSC FOR ACCESS TO ALL SOUTH CAROLINA CALLING ZONES
 COLUMBIA, S.C., April 3 /PRNewswire/ -- AT&T (NYSE: T) today asked the Public Service Commission to expand the benefits of competition to all South Carolina consumers by authorizing a greater degree of competition on all long-distance calls made within the state.
 "South Carolina consumers want to use the long-distance telephone company of their choice when they make calls from any telephone in the state -- including pay phones," said AT&T assistant vice president Greg Follensbee. "But today, local telephone companies block access to other carriers on long-distance calls made within their local calling zones," Follensbee added.
 Follensbee said the capability of callers to simply dial their carrier's 10XXX code and be automatically connected to that company would also be particularly attractive to business travelers and tourists within the state.
 In their petition to the PSC, AT&T asked that it be allowed to provide interexchange services on a statewide basis, that consumers are allowed to reach the carrier of their choice for long-distance calls within local calling zones, and that payments of compensation to local telephone companies over and above access charges -- those charges AT&T and other long-distance companies must pay to connect to local telephone users -- be eliminated.
 Follensbee said that toll competition within local calling zones is allowed in over 39 states, and it is time for South Carolina customers to enjoy the same benefits consumers in those states enjoy. Studies have shown that in states allowing competition, the local exchange company's market share has generally decreased only 2/10 of 1 percent.
 "And since the overall market is growing at a rate of about 10 percent, such an insignificant decrease in market share would still result in local exchange companies continuing to experience significant growth in their local toll market," Follensbee said.
 The Public Service Commission is expected to consider AT&T's request later this month.
 -0- 4/3/92
 /CONTACT: Bill Blair, 404-810-7241 (office) or 404-664-3623 (after hours), or Ron Laughlin, 704-331-3003 (office) or 704-553-9200 (after hours), both of AT&T/
 (T) CO: American Telephone and Telegraph Company; Public Service
 Commission ST: South Carolina IN: TLS SU:


BR-EA -- AT006 -- 4935 04/03/92 15:14 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 3, 1992
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