Maine Revised Statutes

§2523. Street lights; use of poles

This section governs street lights that are attached to utility poles in the public way. [2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW).]

1. Ownership and maintenance options.  On or after October 1, 2014, a transmission and distribution utility shall provide the following options to municipalities for street and area lighting provided by light fixtures attached to poles owned by the transmission and distribution utility or on shared-use poles in the electrical space under the contractual management of the transmission and distribution utility located in the public way:
A. The transmission and distribution utility provides all of the components of the street lighting system, including installation on the utility poles and maintenance, and provides electricity delivery to the street lighting system from a power vendor selected by the municipality. The transmission and distribution utility shall apply a monthly charge for these services as approved by the commission that reflects the total cost to provide street lighting equipment for each light and a separate charge for power delivery consistent with subsection 3; [2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW).]
B. The transmission and distribution utility installs all of the components of the street lighting hardware as selected, purchased and owned by the municipality on utility poles owned by the transmission and distribution utility or in the electrical space under contractual management of the transmission and distribution utility on shared-use poles and connects the light to the power source on the pole. The transmission and distribution utility may apply a one-time charge per light fixture for installation as established by the commission.
Any repairs made by the transmission and distribution utility to the mounting hardware or the power supply wire connection following installation must be billed at a rate established by the commission. Maintenance of all components of the light fixture is the responsibility of the municipality or its contractor. Any person performing maintenance work on behalf of the municipality pursuant to this provision must be qualified pursuant to applicable federal or state standards or any standards established by the commission for such work and must have liability insurance in an amount and with terms determined by the commission. Light locations, the street lighting hardware installed and delivery charges are governed by subsections 2 and 3; and [2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW).]
C. The transmission and distribution utility connects to the power lines a light fixture either owned by or owned and installed by the municipality or its contractor on a pole owned by the transmission and distribution utility or on a shared-use pole in the electrical space under the contractual management of the transmission and distribution utility. Light locations, the street lighting hardware installed and delivery charges are governed by subsections 2 and 3. Maintenance of the light fixture and mounting hardware is the responsibility of the municipality or its contractor. Any person installing or working on municipally owned street lighting equipment pursuant to this paragraph on behalf of the municipality must be qualified pursuant to applicable federal and state standards or any standards established by the commission for such work and must have liability insurance in an amount and with terms determined by the commission. The transmission and distribution utility may apply a one-time power connection charge per light fixture as established by the commission. [2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW).]
[ 2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW) .]
2. Lighting location and installation.  For municipally owned street lighting hardware located on poles owned by the transmission and distribution utility or in the electrical space under the contractual management of the transmission and distribution utility on shared-use poles in the public way, the location on the pole and the street lighting hardware installed, as well as any associated charges, are governed by the following provisions.
A. The commission shall establish criteria, based on standard utility industry practice, for determining possible locations on the utility pole for the street lighting hardware, determining any changes that may be needed, including, but not limited to, relocating equipment already on the pole, installing a taller pole or bracing an existing pole, as well as determining any one-time fees the transmission and distribution utility may charge the municipality for making the determinations and undertaking the work necessitated by the determinations. The criteria must also specify the conditions under which a request from a municipality to locate a light fixture on a pole may reasonably be denied by the transmission and distribution utility. [2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW).]
B. The commission shall establish basic criteria, consistent with standard utility industry practice, for municipally owned street lighting hardware installed on utility poles that address any reasonable safety and compatibility issues with other equipment on or uses of the pole. The criteria must provide a basis for determining when no additional assessment work, and related fees pursuant to paragraph A, would be warranted for a replacement light fixture because the new light fixture places comparable or lower demands on the utility pole and related utility equipment than the light fixture being replaced. [2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW).]
[ 2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW) .]
3. Delivery rates and associated charges.  The commission shall establish through appropriate proceedings the charges for the transmission and distribution utility to deliver electricity to the municipal street lighting systems as provided in subsection 1. For municipal street lighting system options described in subsection 1, paragraphs B and C, the commission shall determine what, if any, ongoing fees beyond the power-only delivery charge may be assessed, including a pole attachment fee. In making this determination, the commission shall weigh, among other factors, the municipal interest to serve the general public and the location of the poles in municipal rights-of-way.
[ 2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW) .]
4. Transfer of ownership.  A transmission and distribution utility shall allow a municipality to transfer utility-owned street and area lighting for which the municipality is billed to either form of municipal ownership in subsection 1, paragraphs B and C in a time frame and under terms established by the commission. The commission shall also determine a fair and equitable cost for all aspects of the transfer and establish guidelines to best enable the contiguous ownership of lighting fixtures.
[ 2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW) .]
SECTION HISTORY
2013, c. 369, Pt. E, §1 (NEW).