ARCHIVED - Telecom Commission Letter - 8678-C-12-200605553

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Our File: 8678-C-12-200605553

Ottawa, 20 June 2006

To:   Distribution List - Parties to Review of price cap framework , Telecom Public Notice CRTC 2006-5, 9 May 2006 (Public Notice 2006-5)

Re: Request to modify the process in Public Notice 2006-5

In a letter dated 18 May 2006, the Public Interest Advocacy Centre on behalf of the Consumers' Association of Canada and the National Anti-Poverty Organization, (hereinafter "the Consumer Groups") requested the Commission to reconsider the process and the timetable set out in Public Notice 2006-5.   Specifically, the Consumer Groups requested that the Commission:

•  expand the schedule to permit the incumbent local exchange carriers (ILECs) to initially file proposals and be subject to interrogatories prior to other parties filing evidence; and  

•  convene a technical/settlement conference before the oral hearing to potentially find issues of agreement amongst the parties and resolve outstanding questions concerning evidentiary issues.

In a letter dated 19 May 2006 , the Public Interest Law Centre supported the Consumer Groups' request.   The Commission also received letters dated 24 May 2006 from Aliant Telecom Inc. and Bell Canada , Saskatchewan Telecommunications, and TELUS Communications Company opposing the Consumer Groups' request.

The Commission has carefully considered the impact of expanding the schedule and convening a technical/settlement conference on the effectiveness of the participation of interested parties in this proceeding.   The Commission notes that this proceeding will establish the third price cap regime for the large ILECs and that the scope of this proceeding has been significantly narrowed in comparison to the last review.   As such, the Commission considers that the issues are well understood by all parties.

The Commission considers that a review of ILECs' submissions prior to other parties filing evidence is not necessary in order for parties to participate effectively.   The Commission considers that the schedule set out in Public Notice 2006-5 provides sufficient opportunity for all parties to make their case and to respond to the case made by other parties.   The Commission notes that all parties can file evidence, test the other parties' submissions with interrogatories and cross-examination at an oral hearing, and can also file final argument/reply argument.

Lastly, the Commission considers that expanding the schedule to accommodate the Consumer Groups' request would delay the release of the decision, thus creating uncertainty in the industry.

Accordingly, the Commission hereby denies the Consumer Groups' request to modify the process set out in Public Notice 2006-5.  

Yours sincerely,

(Original signed by Diane Rhéaume)

Diane Rhéaume
Secretary General

c.c.   M-L. Hayward , CRTC, 819-953-7274

Date Modified: 2006-06-20

Date modified: