"This levels the playing field when it comes to offering competitive pricing," said Mike Smith, FairPoint's Vermont state president. "We have the team and the technology to go head to head with anyone; now we can compete in real time."
The new plan recognizes the strides FairPoint has made in improving and maintaining high standards of customer service. It substantially reduces the amount of service quality penalties FairPoint could be subject to, to a maximum of
per year, down from
per year. With continued strong service quality performance, automatic penalties will be eliminated in 2013.
About New Hampshire
, the legislation allows telecommunications providers to compete more effectively and confirms that Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services and IP-enabled services are not subject to regulation. It also preserves incumbent local exchange carrier obligations to serve as the carrier of last resort and ensures that all residents have an affordable basic service option for phone service.
The new law provides regulatory freedom for all retail products and services, and allows FairPoint flexibility to quickly adjust its pricing to respond to changes in the marketplace. Also, it removes longstanding regulatory requirements, including burdensome recordkeeping and financial penalties that inhibit competition, drain resources and increase expenses.
"The legislation puts in place much needed regulatory reform reflecting today's competitive realities," said
state president. "The current regulatory system, which was created 100 years ago, had become completely outdated because of changes in the telecommunications marketplace."
McHugh stated that the regulatory reform legislation eliminated the previously imposed
retail service penalty scheme that exposed FairPoint, and no other carrier in
, to penalties in the amount of
The legislation passed in
- the first fundamental overhaul of the state's regulatory statute since 1913 – also moves the regulatory requirements of all telecommunications providers closer to parity.
"The legislation is a bold step forward and recognizes that the industry is going through a period of dramatic change," said
state president. "Vigorous competition is a reality in
, and telecommunications regulation will now reflect that."
The new regulation provides regulatory freedom for all retail products and services and allows FairPoint flexibility to quickly adjust its pricing to respond to changes in the marketplace.