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Park County gets another improvement in phone service

Brief by Central Staff

Communications – August 2001 – Colorado Central Magazine

Park County is getting more connected with itself all the time these days.

The most recent improvement, approved on June 28 by the Federal Communications Commission, is an expanded local calling zone, so that it’s a local call between Bailey and Fairplay.

They’re only 30 miles apart, but the complication had been a boundary known as a LATA, which is essentially an area code. Fairplay was in 719, and Bailey was in 303 (and now also 920).

To approve a local calling area that crosses a LATA, both the FCC and the Colorado Public Utilities Commission require proof of a “community of interest.”

Park County spent about $5,400 on legal services in arguing that there was a community of interest between the county seat and one of the county’s larger settlements, and will now save about $2,000 a month on its phone bills after the expanded calling area takes effect in January.

This follows two other service improvements. One allows business lines in Fairplay to make local calls to Summit County, and the other makes it a local call between Fairplay and Guffey.

Back in February, Leadville got a similar expansion into another LATA when Breckenridge, Dillon, and Vail were added to its local calling area.

Here in Salida, we’re reasonably pleased with our local zone, which extends from Saguache to Leadville, and east as far as Howard — but we sure wouldn’t complain if Crestone, Westcliffe, and Fairplay were also local calls.