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Verizon sells Washington landline business

Moving from land phone lines to other types of business, Verizon Communications Inc. Wednesday said it’s selling all its Washington land line customer accounts to Frontier Communications Corp. in a deal valued at $8.6 billion in stock and cash.

Verizon will spin off 4.8 million land lines — more than 570,000 in Washington — and merge them with Frontier’s 2.3 million lines. The sale impacts all small business customers and about 579,000 residential customers in Washington. The sale has no effect on Verizon Wireless customers.

Those residential customers are mostly in rural areas and include residents in Pullman, Newport, Richland, Kennewick, Wenatchee, Chelan, Quincy and Republic. Some North Idaho customers in North Idaho are also affected, said Jonathan Davies, a Verizon spokesman.

He said the sale will take a full year for approval and transfer of the accounts.

“We are planning to focus on the growth of broadband and wireless services elsewhere,” said Davies.