Telecom Commission Letter addressed to David Pothier (City Wide Communications Inc.)
Ottawa, 6 July 2020
Our reference: 8621-C17-202002856
City Wide Communications Inc.
RE: Part 1 Application requesting an Order directing Bragg Communications Inc. o/a Eastlink to move its TPIA POI from Pennant Point to the core of Halifax - Request by City Wide Communications Inc. for disclosure of information filed in confidence by Bragg Communications Inc. and extension of the deadline to file reply
The Commission has received a letter from City Wide Communications Inc. (City Wide), dated 30 June 2020, in which the company submitted a request for the disclosure of certain information to City Wide that was filed in confidence by Bragg Communications Inc. operating as Eastlink (Eastlink). In the same letter City Wide also requests that the Commission extend the deadline for City Wide to file its reply until one week after the date on which the Commission either denies City Wide’s disclosure request or Eastlink files any information that the Commission orders Eastlink to disclose to City Wide.
City Wide requested that Eastlink disclose parts of paragraph 17 of this latter’s 25 June 2020 answer related to the initial price quote for certain services. City Wide indicated that it appeared that the redacted information is already known by it and argued that it was important for it to be able to understand the characterization made by Eastlink of interactions held between the companies with a view to responding to any characterization that may be inaccurate.
In a letter dated 2 July 2020, Eastlink replied that the information at issue relates to Eastlink’s pricing model for their non-tariffed business services and that the release of this information would provide competitors with invaluable information that would not otherwise be available to them, and which would enable them to develop more effective business strategies, causing specific direct harm to its business.
The Commission’s approach to disclosure is as follows: (a) pursuant to section 38 of the Telecommunications Act (the Act), information filed with the Commission in the course of a proceeding is, subject to section 39 of the Act, to be made public; (b) where information is designated as confidential, an assessment is first made as to whether it qualifies for confidential treatment under section 39; (c) where it does qualify for designation, the Commission then assesses whether the specific and direct harm resulting from disclosure would outweigh the public interest in disclosure. Another factor is the expected usefulness of the information at issue to parties in furthering their competitive position.
Commission staff considers that the information under consideration qualifies for designation as confidential under section 38 in that it is commercial information that is confidential and that is treated consistently in a confidential manner by the person who submitted it. Commission staff further considers that there would be likely harm to Eastlink if this information would be released. However Commission staff also notes that the information at issue all relates to an initial price quote that was subsequently superseded by a revised quote. In light of this, Commission staff considers that there is no public interest in requiring the disclosure of the information under consideration.
Commission staff notes that Eastlink did not object to City Wide’s request for an extension of time to file its reply. Commission staff considers that in light of the circumstances, it would be appropriate to extend City Wide’s deadline to file its reply to 8 July 2020
Original signed by
Director, Competitor Services & Costing Implementation
c.c.: Marielle Wilson, Bragg Communications Inc., email@example.com
Marc Pilon, firstname.lastname@example.org
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