Frontier-Verizon deal faces regulatory showdown in W. Va.

The fate of Frontier's purchase of Verizon's rural lines in West Virginia is in the hands of that state's Public Service Commission, which is meeting this week to evaluate whether they should approve the deal or not.  

Worried that they might be facing another Fairpoint debacle in their state, opposition to Frontier's pending $8.6 billion acquisition of Verizon's rural lines continues to mount.

Since Frontier announced its intention to buy Verizon's lines last year, unions and consumer advocates have argued that because Frontier will have to take on an additional $3.3 billion in debt, they will not only cut jobs but lack the ability to upgrade existing lines to expand broadband services throughout the state.

On the flip side, supporters of the deal argue that Frontier's acquisition will have the positive effects of improving the state's economy and expanding the availability of broadband access to its mainly rural population.

Likewise, Frontier has taken steps to strike back at its opposition by reaching a settlement with four other service providers protesting the deal as well as pledging $12 million to upgrade the state's landline network infrastructure. In addition, Frontier said it would also honor Verizon's existing interconnection arrangements it has with other carriers in West Virginia.

For more:
- The Charleston Gazette has this article
- xChange has this article

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