While Bell Atlantic’s advertising team was busy this week blitzing New Yorkers with commercials announcing the company’s new long distance service, the company’s attorneys sat quietly with their fingers crossed, hoping that a circuit court would not foil their launch plans.

On Tuesday, Bell Atlantic’s attorneys breathed a heavy sigh of relief when the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit refused to grant an emergency stay of the Federal Communications Commission’s decision to grant Bell Atlantic authority to provide long distance service in New York.

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