FairPoint faces new allegations over Verizon network acquisition

FairPoint continues to run into trouble with regulators in New England. Today, news broke that telecom regulators in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont are investigating whether FairPoint lied about being able to oversee the telephone lines it purchased from Verizon late last year. Since the service provider officially took over the lines in February, there has been a steep rise in consumer and wholesale customer issues including billing errors, service order delays and slow response on customer help lines.

An Associated Press article revealed that regulators in the three New England states where the service provider operates service are looking at an anonymous e-mail that said FairPoint developed a program "to deceive the audience into believing they were watching a real demonstration" of being prepared for the cutover. At this point, the only information being given is that a Maine regulator thinks the e-mail is from someone close to the company.

In response, the Vermont Public Service Board has asked FairPoint to respond to the allegations by next Monday, while consumer advocate offices in New Hampshire and Maine are asking their commissions to look into the issue.

"We're extremely concerned about this," said Wayne Jortner, senior counsel to the public advocate in Maine in a statement. "It's consistent with other things we've heard from other persons who've come forward anonymously. ... We don't presume the truth of the allegations, but we would like to know what the answer is."

For more:
- Los Angeles Times/Associated Press has this article

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