CONTROLS: Miniwar Over Dividends

Florida Telephone Corp. is hardly the largest of the nation's 1,840 "independent" (non-Bell) telephone companies. But it is certainly the most independent. While almost all the nation's corporations complied with President Nixon's request that they hold dividends down to pre-Aug. 15 levels, the $20 million-a-year central Florida utility refused.

It was not so much a question of money; the company increased its quarterly payout from 13¢ to 14¢, or a total of only $46,000 on all outstanding shares. Rather, as Florida Telephone President Max Wettstein told a four-man board at the Cost of...

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