Frontier settles Ohio service quality investigation as it works through bankruptcy reorganization

Frontier Communications has settled a service quality investigation by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) as it works through bankruptcy reorganization. Frontier will invest $25 million in each of the next three years in Ohio, improve service response times, reduce 911 outages, credit customers for outages lasting more than 72 hours, and discontinue the practice of attempting to sell maintenance plans and other services prior to resolving the customer’s issue.

Last year, CWA urged the PUCO to address Frontier’s refusal to recall dozens of trained and experienced Ohio technicians, who are currently laid off, to make much-needed repairs. Since Frontier’s acquisition of Ohio landlines from Verizon in 2010, Frontier has cut its workforce by 70 percent, meaning fewer resources for maintenance, repairs, and customer service. 

“We believe paying to import technicians from outside the state to perform ineffectively, instead of employing local technicians who are already familiar with the network, shortchanges customers and Ohio communities and puts them at risk,” said eight CWA local presidents in a letter to PUCO. “We believe Frontier needs to invest in its local workforce to ensure the long-term viability of our network and connectedness of our community.”

Frontier filed for bankruptcy in April. If approved, the proposed restructuring will cut $10 billion or more than fifty percent of Frontier’s debt, putting the new Frontier in a better financial position to continue operations. 

Links:

PDF iconThe Public Utilities Commission of Ohio findings and order (PUCO, Aug. 12, 2020)\

PDF icon Letter from Eight Local Presidents to the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (CWA, Oct. 21, 2019)

Frontier Communications drops into Chapter 11 bankruptcy (FierceTelecom, Apr. 15, 2020)