Telecom Procedural Letter addressed to Philippe Gauvin (Bell Canada) and Howard Slawner (Rogers Communications Canada Inc.)

Ottawa, 3 April 2020

Our reference: 8662-B2-201912618


Mr. Philippe Gauvin
Assistant General Counsel
Bell Canada
Floor 19, 160 Elgin Street
Ottawa, Ontario K2P 2C4

Mr. Howard Slawner
Vice President – Regulatory Telecom
Rogers Communications Canada Inc.
350 Bloor Street East, 5th Floor
Toronto, Ontario M4W 0A1

Re: Bell Canada Part 1 Application to Review and Vary Telecom Decision 2019-390 – Commission Extension of Time

Dear Sirs:

In Telecom Decision CRTC 2019-390 Footnote1 (the Decision), the Commission directed Bell Canada (Bell) to deploy one-way toll-free trunks between its network and that of Rogers Communications Canada Inc. (Rogers) within Bell’s Incumbent Local Exchange Carrier (ILEC) operating territory to carry toll-free traffic originated on Rogers’ network and destined for Bell’s toll-free telephone number customers. The trunks were to be installed within 150 days of the date of the Decision and Bell was also directed to file revised tariff pages at least 30 days prior to completing the trunk deployment.

On 20 December 2019, Bell filed a Part 1 application requesting that the Commission review and vary (R&V) the Decision, submitting that it suffered from several flaws giving rise to a substantial doubt as to its correctness. Bell also requested that the Commission stay the Decision until it rules on its R&V application.

Rogers has opposed both the R&V application and stay request.

Since the record of this proceeding closed on 14 February 2020, Canada has been engulfed by the global COVID-19 pandemic which is having a profound effect on all Canadians, who have been directed by their governments to practice social distancing and to remain at home in order to help contain the spread of this virus. As a result of the pandemic and millions more Canadians suddenly staying home and working from home, the volume of traffic has dramatically increased and other changes are being observed which impact Canadian telecommunications networks. The Commission recognizes that telecommunications service providers (TSPs), including Bell and Rogers, are rightly focused on ensuring that their networks continue to function at peak efficiency to meet the unique and heavy demands being placed on them at this time.

The Commission considers that the COVID-19 pandemic represents an unprecedented force majeure situation during which it would not be appropriate for the Commission to expect Bell to make these non-essential changes to their networks.

The Commission therefore extends the deadline for the deployment of toll-free trunks and the requirement for Bell to file revised tariff pages by 90 days from the dates outlined in the Decision. The deployment of the trunks must be completed by 17 August 2020 and the revised tariff pages must be filed by 20 July 2020.

The Commission notes that it continues its review of the R&V application and stay request.


Original signed by

Claude Doucet
Secretary General

c.c.:  Canadian Network Operator Consortium,

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