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Vermont Confuses Me (specifically re: Fairpoint)

The first half of that title could apply to so many things, but regarding the Fairpoint proposal, Vermont’s PSB found this:

In rejecting the application, Vermont’s Public Service Board said in a statement that FairPoint failed to demonstrate that the company would be financially sound after completing the transaction… “Significantly, the Board noted that its review did not consider a recent settlement in Maine that had the effect of lowering the purchase price of the merger,” the Vermont Public Service Board said in its statement.

And the article adds this:

The companies settled objections from Maine regulators on December 13 and revised its transaction proposal that lowered the price by about $200 million. The new reworked proposal, has not yet been submitted to Vermont regulators.

So, the Vermont PSB knows about the altered terms of the deal but decided to issue a ruling based on what it knows is inaccurate data? Why would they do such a thing?

* They were under a deadline
* They can only cast a reject/accept under such a deadline
* There wasn’t a deadline but they wanted to make the news and/or color perceptions
* They’re clueless.

So, the menu as presented is: incompetence, malice, or bureaucracy. What other possibilities are there (I’m asking, not being rhetorical)? What does Hanlon have to say about government?

[Thanks to Steve for the link]