Overhaul Outdated NY Telecom Rules, Groups Demand

A new coalition is calling on regulators in Albany to overhaul how New Yorkers get landline telephone and internet services.

Connect New York Coalition says the rules are outdated, service is expensive, and communications networks are vulnerable to natural disasters.

Susan Lerner of Common Cause, a good-government group, said Sandy exposed some of the system's flaws.

“Small businesses down in the lower part of the city were without telephone service at all. And they got what can only be described as the runaround,” Lerner said.

Other groups in the coalition include AARP, Consumers Union, and the Communications Workers of America. Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner and Congressman Tim Bishop are also supporting the effort.

Connect New York has filed a petition with the Public Service Commission, asking for a review of policies.

The PSC says it began a comprehensive review of communications guidelines in May.