Administrative Law Keyed to Lawson
AT&T Corp. v. Iowa Utilities Board
The LECs challenged Rule 319, the primary unbundling rule, claiming that the FCC had ignored the Act’s requirement that it consider whether access to nonproprietary elements was “necessary,” and whether lack of access would “impair” an entrant’s ability to provide service, pursuant to Section:251(d)(2). The unbundling rules did not impose a requirement of facility ownership on carriers who sought to lease network elements, and the effect was to allow competitors to provide local phone service relying solely on the elements in the incumbent’s network. The LECs argued that this undermined the Act’s goal of encouraging entrants to develop their own facilities. The Commission, MCI and AT&T petitioned for review, and the LECs cross-petitioned.
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