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AT&T plans blitz to block delay on access charges

AT&T said Monday it has launched a $1 million lobbying blitz to try to defeat a Senate bill that would delay planned long-distance ''access'' charges for two years. Senate Commerce Committee chairman Robert Packwood (R) of Oregon, the bill's main advocate, expects the bill to pass.

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AT&T spent more than $2 million fighting a House bill last fall. The bill, which passed, would eliminate access charges. The flat monthly access charges - They are to pay for a customer's connection, or access, to long-distance services.

The White House last week said it would not back any delay on the access charges.

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