Legislative leaders shelve SBC deregulation bill
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ Democratic legislative leaders pulled the plug Monday on a bill to remove SBC from regulation by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission.
Senate President Pro Tem Cal Hobson and House Speaker Larry Adair said the issue of deregulation of the telecommunications industry will be the subject of an interim legislative study.
The announcement effectively shelves Senate Bill 1119 for the 2004 session.
The measure had been supported by SBC and opposed by AT&T and cable companies.
There was no immediate comment from SBC.
Hobson, D-Lexington, said the deregulation bill was one of the most complicated issues the Legislature had ever considered.
``Before we make a dramatic change in state law, we owe it to the ratepayers of this state to make sure we totally understand what is at stake for both the companies that offer telephone services and the people who pay telephone bills,'' Hobson said.
``With little time remaining in the legislative session, the best course of action is to send this measure to a committee that will work to satisfy everyone's concerns,'' added Adair, D-Stilwell.