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First Substitute H.B. 320

This document includes House Committee Amendments incorporated into the bill on Thu, Mar 1, 2012 at 2:18 PM by jeyring. -->

Representative Douglas Sagers proposes the following substitute bill:


             1     
UTILITY FACILITY SITING

             2     
2012 GENERAL SESSION

             3     
STATE OF UTAH

             4     
Chief Sponsor: Douglas Sagers

             5     
Senate Sponsor: Peter C. Knudson

             6     
             7      LONG TITLE
             8      General Description:
             9          This bill addresses the review of utility siting decisions by the Utility Facility Review
             10      Board.
             11      Highlighted Provisions:
             12          This bill:
             13          .    modifies the time period for hearings and decisions of the Utility Facility Review
             14      Board;
             15          .    establishes a deadline for the board to hold a hearing on the merits;
             16          .    establishes a presumption that the utility has taken certain action under specified
             17      circumstances; and
             18          .    makes technical changes.
             19      Money Appropriated in this Bill:
             20          None
             21      Other Special Clauses:
             22          None
             23      Utah Code Sections Affected:
             24      AMENDS:
             25          54-14-301, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2010, Chapter 286


             26          54-14-304, as enacted by Laws of Utah 1997, Chapter 197
             27          54-14-305, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2011, Chapter 340
             28          54-18-305, as enacted by Laws of Utah 2009, Chapter 316
             29     
             30      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             31          Section 1. Section 54-14-301 is amended to read:
             32           54-14-301. Creation, purpose, and composition of board.
             33          (1) The Utility Facility Review Board is created H. [ within the Department of
             33a      Commerce ] .H
             34      to resolve disputes between local governments and public utilities regarding the siting and
             35      construction of facilities as provided in this part.
             36          (2) The board shall be composed of:
             37          (a) the three members of the commission;
             38          (b) an individual appointed by the governor from a list of nominees of the Utah League
             39      of Cities and Towns; and
             40          (c) an individual appointed by the governor from a list of nominees of the Utah
             41      Association of Counties.
             42          (3) The chair of the commission shall serve as chair of the board.
             43          (4) Members of the commission shall serve as members of the board during their terms
             44      of office as commissioners and until their successors on the commission have been appointed
             45      and taken office.
             46          (5) (a) Members of the board who are not commissioners:
             47          (i) shall have four-year terms, except the initial term of the individual first appointed
             48      by the governor from nominees of the Utah Association of Counties shall be two years;
             49          (ii) may be appointed for one succeeding term; and
             50          (iii) may continue to serve until their successor takes office.
             51          (b) Vacancies in the board of members who are not commissioners shall be filled for
             52      the unexpired term.
             53          (6) Three members of the board constitute a quorum.
             54          (7) A member of the board may be removed for cause by the governor.
             55          (8) A member may not receive compensation or benefits for the member's service, but
             56      may receive per diem and travel expenses in accordance with:


             57          (a) Section 63A-3-106 ;
             58          (b) Section 63A-3-107 ; and
             59          (c) rules made by the Division of Finance pursuant to Sections 63A-3-106 and
             60      63A-3-107 .
             61          Section 2. Section 54-14-304 is amended to read:
             62           54-14-304. Initial hearing.
             63          (1) The board shall convene an initial hearing within [40] 50 days [of] after the date
             64      review is initiated.
             65          (2) At the initial hearing, the board shall:
             66          (a) determine how the review will take place, including whether it will be conducted as
             67      a formal or informal adjudicative proceeding[.]; and
             68          (b) set a schedule for the review proceeding.
             69          (3) The board shall hold a hearing on the merits within 60 days after the initial hearing.
             70          Section 3. Section 54-14-305 is amended to read:
             71           54-14-305. Written decisions of board.
             72          (1) The board shall issue a written decision on the review expeditiously and, in any
             73      event, not later than [45] 75 days following the initial hearing.
             74          (2) The written decision shall:
             75          (a) specify whether the facility should be constructed and, if so, whether any
             76      requirements or conditions imposed by the local government may not be imposed because they
             77      impair the ability of the public utility to provide safe, reliable, and adequate service to its
             78      customers; and
             79          (b) resolve any dispute regarding:
             80          (i) the standard cost or estimated excess cost of the facility;
             81          (ii) the date on which construction of the facility should commence in order to avoid a
             82      significant risk of impairment of safe, reliable, and adequate service to customers of the public
             83      utility;
             84          (iii) whether the public utility has sought a permit, authorization, approval, exception,
             85      or waiver with respect to a facility sufficiently in advance of the date construction should
             86      commence, based upon reasonably foreseeable conditions, to allow the local government
             87      reasonable time to pay for any estimated excess cost;


             88          (iv) apportionment of the actual excess cost of the facility between the local
             89      government and the public utility pursuant to Subsection 54-14-303 [(1)(g)](7); or
             90          (v) the proposed location and siting of a facility subject to Title 54, Chapter 18, Siting
             91      of High Voltage Power Line Act, and in accordance with Section 54-14-102 .
             92          (3) (a) Notwithstanding Subsection (6), the written decision of the board may designate
             93      the facility route for a high voltage transmission line pursuant to a dispute described under
             94      Section [ 54-14-304 ] 54-18-304 .
             95          (b) The public utility [shall be] is entitled to recover from its ratepayers any actual
             96      excess costs apportioned to it under Subsection (2)(b)(iv).
             97          (4) If the board determines that a facility that a local government has prohibited should
             98      be constructed, the written decision shall specify any general location parameters required to
             99      provide safe, reliable, adequate, and efficient service to the customers of the public utility.
             100          (5) The written decision shall leave to the local government any issue that does not
             101      affect the provision of safe, reliable, adequate, and efficient service to customers of the public
             102      utility or that does not involve an estimated excess cost.
             103          (6) With respect to local government requirements or conditions that impose an
             104      estimated excess cost but do not impair the provision of safe, reliable, and adequate service to
             105      the customers of the public utility, the written decision shall leave each siting issue to the local
             106      government except determination of the estimated excess cost and determination of when the
             107      construction of the facility should commence.
             108          (7) (a) In determining when the construction of the facility should commence, the
             109      board shall consider whether the public utility sought a permit, authorization, approval,
             110      exception, or waiver from the local government in a timely manner based upon reasonably
             111      foreseeable conditions[, and, if].
             112          (b) If the board determines that the public utility did not [do so, it] seek a permit,
             113      authorization, approval, exception, or waiver in a timely manner, the board shall allow
             114      sufficient time for the local government to pay any actual excess cost that may be imposed as a
             115      result of requirements or conditions the local government has imposed that do not impair the
             116      provision of safe, reliable, and adequate service to customers of the public utility.
             117          (c) There is a presumption that the utility has sought a permit, authorization, approval,
             118      exception, or waiver in a timely manner if the utility has complied with:


             119          (i) the notice and filing requirements of Chapter 18, Siting of High Voltage Power Line
             120      Act; H. [ and ] or .H
             121          (ii) the timing requirements imposed by a local government land use ordinance.
             122          Section 4. Section 54-18-305 is amended to read:
             123           54-18-305. Appeal of high voltage power line route.
             124          This [section] chapter does not affect a public utility's or local government's right to
             125      appeal a high voltage power line route to the Utility Facility Review Board in accordance with
             126      the provisions of Title 54, Chapter 14, Utility Facility Review Board Act.


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