ARCHIVED -  Telecom Order CRTC 98-1158

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Telecom Order

Ottawa, 20 November 1998
Telecom Order CRTC 98-1158
On 22 September 1998, Northern Telephone Limited (Northern) filed an application for approval of tariff revisions reflecting the introduction of Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) Access Service.
File No.: Tariff Notice 87
1.ADSL service allows a service provider to provide high speed asymmetrical data transmission on a residence line.
2.The ADSL Access Service allows the service provider to access a subscriber's line at the company's central office.
3.Northern's application noted that the Commission had previously approved the same ADSL Access Service rates for Bell Canada (Bell).
4.Northern did not submit costing in support of this new service. In this regard, Northern referenced the Commission's determinations in Regulatory Framework for the Independent Telephone Companies in Quebec and Ontario (Except Ontario Northland Transportation Commission, Québec-Téléphone and Télébec ltée), Telecom Decision CRTC 96-6, 7 August 1996 (Decision 96-6).
5.Comments were received from Ontario Northland Transportation Commission (O.N. Tel) and ViaNet Internet Solutions (ViaNet).
6.Both O.N. Tel and ViaNet noted the absence of costing support and expressed concerns in relation to potential mis-allocation of investments and expenses and possible cross-subsidization of this service.
7.O.N. Tel and ViaNet were concerned that Northern had not made the necessary arrangements to ensure that competitors who wish to provide their own ADSL services have equitable access to the necessary underlying facilities.
8.O.N. Tel and ViaNet noted that competitors who request co-location would be accommodated through a Special Assembly Tariff.
9.O.N. Tel submitted that equitable treatment of all competitors requires the development of standard terms and conditions for co-location.
10.ViaNet suggested that alternate access arrangements were necessary, such as connection outside, but near to, the central office.
11.ViaNet noted that ADSL Access Service is not available on business lines.
12.Both O.N. Tel and ViaNet indicated their concerns regarding Bell's ADSL Access Service and the pricing of end-user retail ADSL services by Bell's affiliate.
13.Northern's reply reiterated the Decision 96-6 costing requirements and argued that costing support is not required.
14.Northern stated that to the best of its knowledge it has never received a request for co-location from O.N. Tel or any other competitive supplier of Internet services. Northern noted that the Commission has traditionally assessed the extent of demand for a given service in deciding whether a general tariff is required.
15.In relation to ViaNet's request for the option to connect outside of the central office, Northern noted that it was not aware of other telephone companies providing comparable near central office alternatives. Northern nevertheless stated that it would be prepared to explore with ViaNet any alternate arrangements.
16.Northern argued that it would not be appropriate to withhold approval of Tariff Notice 87 pending the outcome of other proceedings when the rates set out in its proposed tariff have been approved for other telephone companies. Northern argued that withholding approval would lead to unwarranted delays in the introduction of ADSL Internet services in its serving area.
17.The Commission notes that Northern's proposed rates for ADSL Access Service reflect Bell's approved tariff. The Commission is of the view that the rates proposed by Northern are reasonable and that costing information is not required in this instance.
18.The Commission notes O.N. Tel and ViaNet's concerns with regard to the pricing of end-user retail ADSL services provided by an unregulated affiliate of Bell. In the Commission's view, concerns regarding retail ADSL services are not relevant to an application for provision of ADSL Access Service.
19.The Commission is concerned with the availability of access arrangements including co-location. The Commission notes Northern's statements with regard to ViaNet's request for alternate access arrangements.
20.The Commission expects that co-location access by special assembly tariff should be available in most cases. Where general tariff rates are approved for co-location, the Commission requires that special assembly co-location arrangements be based on the general tariff rates for floor space and electric power. The Commission would expect similar arrangements to be provided by Northern for access by ADSL providers.
21.The Commission is of the view that the approval of the proposed ADSL Access service without further delay is in the public interest.
22.In light of the foregoing, the Commission orders that:
(1) The proposed tariff revisions filed under Tariff Notice 87 are approved effective the date of this Order.
(2) Northern is directed to file proposed standard co-location terms to be used in providing co-location special assembly arrangements within 30 days of this Order or to show cause within 10 days as to why it cannot conform to such direction.
Secretary General
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