DT 99-019
  Bell Atlantic/Media One Telecommunications of New Hampshire
         Order Nisi Approving Interconnection Agreement
                    O R D E R   N O.  23,156
                         March 8, 1999
       On February 4, 1999, Media One Telecommunications of
     New Hampshire (MOT) filed with the New Hampshire Public Utilities
     Commission (Commission) a negotiated Interconnection Agreement
     (Agreement) with New England Telephone and Telegraph Company
     (Bell Atlantic).  The Agreement was filed for approval pursuant
     to section 252(e) of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (TAct).
       The agreement filed adopts most terms and conditions of
     the interconnection agreement between Bell Atlantic and New
     England Fiber Communications (Brooks) which was approved by
     Commission Order No. 22,753 dated October 13, 1997.  Notably the
     parties have agreed that reciprocal compensation is provided for
     local traffic which is defined as a call that is originated and
     terminated within a local service area.   
       This Agreement provides, inter alia, for
     transmission/routing of exchange service traffic and exchange
     access traffic, transmission/termination of other types of
     traffic and joint network configuration.  It further provides for
     unbundled access, resale, collocation, number portability,
     dialing parity, access to rights of way, access to data bases,
     and directory assistance service.  The parties will exchange
     technical and traffic information which will be kept proprietary;
     each party will maintain facilities within its own network and
     will not interfere with the other party's systems.
       This Agreement is a comprehensive set of terms and
     conditions that will facilitate the entry of MOT as a competitive
     local exchange carrier (CLEC) in New Hampshire.  The parties
     agree to jointly engineer, plan and operate a diverse
     transmission system with which they will interconnect their
     respective networks.  The Agreement specifies the designation of
     interconnection points, provides for a joint grooming plan, and
     provides for the physical interface of facilities. 
        The interoffice facilities are priced on an unbundled
     basis to allow for use with other unbundled network elements,
     thus creating numerous facilities-based and/or resale options to
     MOT in the provisioning of exchange and exchange access services. 
     The Agreement also includes detailed unbundling of local outside
     plant and central office facilities that would allow MOT to
     provide digital and other high-tech services with minimal future
     negotiating or "grooming" of the Agreement.  Prices in this
     filing are virtually the same as those in previously approved
     non-cellular interconnection agreements for the services/elements
     that are common.  Staff points out that the TAct does not require
     that a telecommunications company sell each service/element for
     the same price or terms to each requesting party.  A CLEC can
     request the entire agreement of another CLEC pursuant to section
     252(i) of the TAct.  
        A Statement of Generally Available Terms (SGAT) was
     filed by Bell Atlantic on July 11, 1997 and took effect October
     20, 1997 per order 22,692 (August 25, 1997) subject to continued
     review pursuant to section 252(f)(4) of the TAct.  This allows
     MOT and other competitors to purchase services or unbundled
     elements that may not be covered by their interconnection
       The Staff has recommended approval of the Agreement
     between MOT and Bell Atlantic based on a review of the petition,
     the Agreement and verbal clarification provided by Bell Atlantic.
       We have reviewed the filing and find it meets the
     standards of section 252(e)(2)(A) of the TAct for approval of a
     negotiated Agreement.  The Agreement does not appear to be
     discriminatory to any carrier not a party to the negotiations and
     is consistent with the public interest, convenience, and
     necessity.  We will approve it on a nisi basis in order to
     provide any interested party an opportunity to submit comments or
     request a hearing pursuant to RSA 374:26.
       We note that as new competitors enter the market,
     greater pressure is put on the 603 area code, so long as today's
     antiquated number assignment process remains in effect. 
     Accordingly, we would urge MOT to request and use numbers
     responsibly and conservatively, and to join in exploring
     alternative mechanisms to use existing numbers as efficiently as
     possible and thereby avert the need for a new area code.
       Based upon the foregoing, it is hereby
       ORDERED NISI, that the Interconnection Agreement
     negotiated between MOT and Bell Atlantic is approved; and it is
       FURTHER ORDERED, that MOT will notify the Commission
     within ten days of making their first facility-based commercial
     call in any exchange that has not already been opened to a "fresh
     look opportunity" as ordered in Docket DE 96-420.  The
     recommended method of notifying the Commission is to provide a
     copy of the "Confirmation of Code Activation Form" which is used
     to notify the North American Numbering Code Administrator.
       FURTHER ORDERED, that the Petitioner shall cause a copy
     of this Order Nisi to be published once in a statewide newspaper
     of general circulation, such publication to be no later than
     March 15, 1999 and to be documented by affidavit filed with this
     office on or before March 22, 1999; and it is
       FURTHER ORDERED, that all persons interested in
     responding to this petition be notified that they may submit
     their comments or file a written request for a hearing on this
     matter before the Commission no later than March 29, 1999; and it
       FURTHER ORDERED, that this Order Nisi shall be
     effective April 5, 1999, unless the Commission provides otherwise
     in a supplemental order issued prior to the effective date.
       By order of the Public Utilities Commission of New
     Hampshire this eighth day of March, 1999.
           Douglas L. Patch       Susan S. Geiger     Nancy Brockway
               Chairman           Commissioner          Commissioner
     Attested by:
     Thomas B. Getz
     Executive Director and Secretary