Months after two former telecom competitors merged, the Texas Supreme Court held that the Public Utility Commission can hear a 5-year-old rate fight between divisions of AT&T and Southwestern Bell. A Ma Bell representative thinks the case, AT&T Communications of Texas v. Southwestern Bell Telephone Co., et al., is moot, but a public utilities commissioner is glad the decision is no longer on hold.

SBC Communications finalized its acquisition of AT&T Corp. in November 2005. After the two companies merged to become AT&T Texas, they no longer were at loggerheads over the so-called switched-access rates that Southwestern Bell had charged AT&T and other long-distance carriers to use Southwestern Bell’s local lines.