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June 20, 2002
WASHINGTON -- BellSouth (NYSE: BLS - News) today filed a five-state application for Federal Communications Commission authorization to offer long distance service to customers in North and South Carolina, Kentucky, Mississippi and Alabama. These five states represent approximately 8.2 million BellSouth customer lines, about one-third of BellSouth's network. Each of the five state commissions involved has unanimously voted in favor of BellSouth's receiving authority to begin competing for long distance customers in their respective states. "These applications reflect BellSouth's hard work and the investment of over $2 billion to meet the FCC requirements for long distance authority. "We believe this is a strong and compelling application and brings BellSouth within 90 days of offering customers in these states the same simple, easy-to- understand rates coupled with high-quality customer service from BellSouth now available in Georgia and Louisiana," said Margaret Greene, President -- Regulatory & External Affairs for BellSouth. Under terms of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, the FCC has 90 days to rule on a Bell long distance application. Over the past several months, state regulators voted to endorse BellSouth's application after considering evidence that BellSouth's local network had been opened to competition, meeting a 14- point federal market-opening checklist. Regulators in each of the five states have voted to endorse BellSouth's application. BellSouth Corp.
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