FairPoint Drops 5 Communities From Basic Landline Requirement

Apr 28, 2017

The Maine PUC has added five more towns to the list of communities will no longer receive regulated for basic landline service under a plan that was approved last year by the state Legislature.

PUC spokesman Harry Lanphear said, as part of the approved schedule, the PUC will no longer regulate provider-of-last-resort services, or POLR, in Scarborough, Gorham, Waterville, Kennebunk and Cape Elizabeth.

“There was a law passed in 2016 that provided for FairPoint to have their obligations for this provider-of-last-resort service — it’s the most basic form of telephone service, just think of it that way,” he says. “We had a public hearing in each of those five communities and we had a handful of people in total that showed up, so there doesn’t seem to be a significant concern at all.”

Last year, FairPoint began the process of winnowing down the number of communities that would be affected by the POLR regulation. At the time, Auburn, Bangor, Biddeford, Lewiston, Sanford and South Portland were released. A spokeswoman from FairPoint says the company will continue to offer basic telephone service statewide, but it will not be regulated in these communities.