Fresh Thinking on Special Access

There is a definite need for fresh thinking regarding the regulatory treatment of special access services because, even as more evidence accumulates that non-ILEC alternatives increasingly are available and are constraining the ILECs’ prices, there continue to be calls for rate re-regulation, or for a halt to further deregulation of special access services. The NRRI Report is disappointing in that it is of a piece with these past pro-rate regulation calls that adhere to a static market view, even though the authors acknowledge positive competitive developments are occurring and readily concede that data is lacking to make a “bright-line” determination that the ILECs continue to possess market power. In these circumstances, the best that one can hope for from the NRRI Report is that, by virtue of this and other reactions, it might be a spur for the fresh thinking that is needed on this subject.

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