RAILROADS AND OTHER PUBLIC UTILITIES
TELECOMMUNICATIONS ACT OF 1988
62-602. Legislative intent. (1) The legislature of the state of Idaho hereby finds that universally available telecommunications services are essential to the health, welfare and economic well-being of the citizens of the state of Idaho and there is a need for establishing legislation to protect and maintain high-quality universal telecommunications at just and reasonable rates for all classes of customers and to encourage innovation within the industry by a balanced program of regulation and competition.
(2) It is the intent of this legislature that effective competition throughout a local exchange calling area will involve a significant number of customers having both service provider and service option choices and that actual competition means more than the mere presence of a competitor. Instead, for there to be actual and effective competition there needs to be substantive and meaningful competition throughout the incumbent telephone corporation’s local exchange calling area.
(3) It is the further intent of the legislature that the commission, in its deliberation of deregulation of the incumbent telephone corporations, will examine the impact such deregulation will have on the public interest in accordance with the general grant of authority given to the commission by the legislature and that all parties be allowed to comment thereon in such proceeding.
(4) The legislature further finds that the telecommunications industry is in a state of transition from a regulated public utility industry to a competitive industry. The legislature encourages the development of open competition in the telecommunications industry in accordance with provisions of Idaho law and consistent with the federal telecommunications act of 1996.
(5) The commission shall administer these statutes with respect to telecommunication rates and services in accordance with these policies and applicable federal law.
(6) The legislature further finds that it is consistent with the public interest, convenience and necessity that the obligation of certain rural telephone companies to comply with the requirements of section 251(c) of the telecommunications act of 1996 should be suspended upon petition of the affected telephone company, based upon the following legislative findings that the suspension is necessary:
(a) To avoid a significant economic impact on users of telecommunications services generally in areas served by the rural telephone companies;
(b) To avoid imposing requirements that are unduly economically burdensome; or
(c) To avoid imposing requirements which are technically infeasible.
[62-602, added 1988, ch. 195, sec. 1, p. 359; am. 1997, ch. 192, sec. 2, p. 540.]