Florida AG, AARP seek $6.5 million Verizon fine

Verizon Communications' service performance in the six west-central Florida counties in which it provides voice, data and video services has been less than stellar, and it could end up costing the company $6.5 million in fines. The AARP and Florida Attorney General are calling for the fine--the largest allowable by state mandate--because they claim the telco willfully violated state service laws 262 times last year.
State regs require the restoration of 95 percent of service outages within 24 hours and 95 percent of other trouble reports within 72 hours, a release said. "Reliable and available telephone service can be critical to consumers during emergencies," said Mike Twomey, an attorney for AARP. "Verizon's failure to fully comply with the PSC's repair rules necessarily extended some of its customers' service outages, making their service less reliable and less available."
The petition also points to a steady decline in Verizon's repair performance since 2002, when the company reported less than 50 violations for the year. Verizon settled a similar complaint in 2001 with a $2 million voluntary contribution to the Florida general revenue fund.
For more:
- Check out this story from the Tampa Bay Tribune
- Or this Legal Newsline story