DR 97-227
                               BELL ATLANTIC
                    Amendment to Special Contract with 
                 Cabletron Systems, Inc. for FDDI Service
             Order Granting Motion for Proprietary Treatment 
                         O R D E R  N O. 22,832  
                             January 12, 1998
         On October 22, 1997, New England Telephone and
     Telegraph Company, d/b/a Bell Atlantic (Bell Atlantic), filed
     with the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission (Commission),
     pursuant to RSA 378:18, an amendment to its special contract with
     Cabletron Systems, Inc.(Cabletron) for FDDI Services.  In support
     of the contract amendment, Bell Atlantic also filed a cost
     analysis of the proposal.  By Order No. 22,786 (November 17,
     1997), the Commission approved the amended special contract but
     did not rule on the Motion for Confidential Treatment.  
         On the same date, Bell Atlantic filed a Motion for
     Confidential Treatment to exempt from public disclosure portions
     of the amended special contract and supporting materials (the
     Information) pursuant to RSA 91-A and N.H. Admin. Rules.  A
     Supplemental Verified Motion for Proprietary Treatment was filed
     on November 21, 1997.  Bell Atlantic filed the amended special
     contract in redacted form as well as full, unredacted copies. 
     Pursuant to Puc 204.05(b), the Information is not disclosed to
     the public and is maintained as provided in 204.06(d) until the
     Commission rules on the Motion for Confidential Treatment. 
         In its motion, Bell Atlantic states that portions of
     the special contract amendment contain customer-specific,
     competitively sensitive data that is within the exemptions from
     disclosure set forth in RSA 91-A:5,IV and N.H. Admin. Rules, Puc
     204.06, including specific component costs, rates and charges for
     specific customer locations, opportunities for growth, and system
     and engineering features.  Bell Atlantic also states that release
     of the Information would compromise Cabletron's business plan and
     provide Cabletron's competitors with valuable marketing
     information, thus giving Cabletron's competitors an unfair
         Bell Atlantic also states that it regularly seeks to
     prevent dissemination of information similar to the subject
     Information, as required by Puc 204.06(c).  Bell Atlantic's
     motion presents facts demonstrating that the Information meets
     the requirements of Puc 204.06(c), and is not general public
     knowledge or published elsewhere and that measures have been
     taken to prevent dissemination in the ordinary course of
     business.  Specifically, a Bell Atlantic Staff Director attests
     that the Information is compiled from internal data bases that
     are not publicly available and which are protected from
     dissemination either by Bell Atlantic employees or by non-Bell
     Atlantic employees.
         Recognizing that the Information was critical to the
     review of the special contract by the Commission, Staff and the
     Office of Consumer Advocate, we also find that the Information
     contained in the filing is sensitive commercial information in a
     competitive market.  Because many of Bell Atlantic's competitors
     have no obligation to obtain Commission approval for similar
     contracts, the need to protect this Information is evident. 
     Based on the company's representations, under the balancing test
     we have applied in prior cases, e.g.,Re New England Telephone
     Company (Auditel), 80 NHPUC 437 (1995), we find that the benefits
     to Bell Atlantic of non-disclosure in this case outweigh the
     benefits to the public of disclosure.   
         Based upon the foregoing, it is hereby
         ORDERED, that Bell Atlantic's Motion for Proprietary
     Treatment is GRANTED; and it is
         FURTHER ORDERED, that this Order is subject to the
     ongoing rights of the Commission, on its own motion or on the
     motion of Staff, any party or any other member of the public, to
     reconsider this Order in light of RSA 91-A, should circumstances
     so warrant.
         By order of the Public Utilities Commission of New
     Hampshire this twelfth day of January, 1998.
        Douglas L. Patch    Bruce B. Ellsworth        Susan S. Geiger
            Chairman           Commissioner            Commissioner
     Attested by:
     Thomas B. Getz
     Executive Director and Secretary