BOISE, Idaho, February 24, 2003 ? Consumers will benefit from an Idaho Public Utilities Commission (IPUC) action taken today that will result in an $8 million dollar investment in Idaho?s telecommunications infrastructure. The IPUC?s order, signed today, will designate $4 million currently held in a special fund for improvements and repairs to the telecommunications network in southern Idaho. Qwest will match the $4 million for a total investment of $8 million dollars.
?We commend the IPUC for thoughtfully evaluating our request for this improvement plan,? said Jim Schmit, Qwest president of Idaho. ?This program will benefit customers and the entire state through increased service quality, a higher level of service reliability, and retention of Idaho jobs.?
?The build-out of the telecommunications network made possible through this proposal will require the experience and skills of our Idaho CWA members,? said Brent Duvall, secretary & treasurer, Communication Workers of America, Idaho State Council. ?It will provide us more opportunity to continue to do what we do best ? serving customers and building a network that will satisfy Idaho?s future needs.?
The IPUC has traditionally required that the funds allocated today, called revenue sharing funds, be used in a way that benefits all Qwest customers. Under the order, improvements will occur over a three-year period and will focus on construction projects including the replacement of damaged telephone cable. Additionally, older telephone systems will be replaced, which will then allow for the deployment of advanced services such as voice mail and Caller ID.
The revenue sharing funds at the IPUC are revenues that Qwest earned in 1995 and 1996 from services that were deregulated in 1989. In 1989, Qwest and the IPUC agreed to share a portion of deregulated revenues with Qwest?s regulated local service customers. Later, the system of revenue sharing ended but the money held in that special fund was earmarked for network improvements.
Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q) is a leading provider of voice, video and data services to more than 25 million customers. The company?s 53,000-plus employees are committed to the ?Spirit of Service? and providing world-class services that exceed customers? expectations for quality, value and reliability. For more information, please visit the Qwest Web site at www.qwest.com.
This release may contain projections and other forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. These statements may differ materially from actual future events or results. Readers are referred to the documents filed by us with the Securities and Exchange Commission, specifically the most recent reports which identify important risk factors that could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, including but not limited to: the duration and extent of the current economic downturn in our 14-state local service area, including its effect on our customers and suppliers; the effects of our anticipated restatement of historical financial statements including delays in or restrictions on our ability to access the capital markets or other adverse effects to our business and financial position; our substantial indebtedness, and our inability to complete any efforts to de-lever our balance sheet through asset sales or other transactions; any adverse outcome of the SEC's current investigation into our accounting policies, practices and procedures; any adverse outcome of the current investigation by the U.S. Attorney's office in Denver into certain matters relating to us; adverse results of increased review and scrutiny by Congress, regulatory authorities, media and others (including any internal analyses) of financial reporting issues and practices or otherwise; the failure of our chief executive and chief financial officers to provide certain certifications relating to certain public filings; rapid and significant changes in technology and markets; any adverse developments in commercial disputes or legal proceedings, including any adverse outcome of current or future legal proceedings related to matters that are the subject of governmental investigations, and, to the extent not covered by insurance, if any, our inability to satisfy any resulting obligations from funds available to us, if any; our future ability to provide interLATA services within our 14-state local service area; potential fluctuations in quarterly results; volatility of our stock price; intense competition in the markets in which we compete, including the likelihood of certain of our competitors emerging from bankruptcy court protection or otherwise reorganizing their capital structure and competing effectively against us; changes in demand for our products and services; dependence on new product development and acceleration of the deployment of advanced new services, such as broadband data, wireless and video services, which could require substantial expenditure of financial and other resources in excess of contemplated levels; higher than anticipated employee levels, capital expenditures and operating expenses; adverse changes in the regulatory or legislative environment affecting our business; and changes in the outcome of future events from the assumed outcome included in our significant accounting policies.
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