SUBSTITUTE SENATE BILL 5260
State of Washington 52nd Legislature 1991 Regular Session
By Senate Committee on Energy & Utilities (originally sponsored by Senators Thorsness, Madsen and Barr; by request of Utilities & Transportation Commission).
Read first time February 13, 1991.
AN ACT Relating to the regulatory authority of the utilities and transportation commission over certain nonmunicipal systems; amending RCW 80.04.010; and reenacting and amending RCW 80.04.110.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
Sec. 1. RCW 80.04.010 and 1989 c 101 s 2 are each amended to read as follows:
As used in this title, unless specifically defined otherwise or unless the context indicates otherwise:
"Commission" means the utilities and transportation commission.
"Commissioner" means one of the members of such commission.
"Competitive telecommunications company" means a telecommunications company which has been classified as such by the commission pursuant to RCW 80.36.320.
"Competitive telecommunications service" means a service which has been classified as such by the commission pursuant to RCW 80.36.330.
"Corporation" includes a corporation, company, association or joint stock association.
"Person" includes an individual, a firm or partnership.
"Gas plant" includes all real estate, fixtures and personal property, owned, leased, controlled, used or to be used for or in connection with the transmission, distribution, sale or furnishing of natural gas, or the manufacture, transmission, distribution, sale or furnishing of other type gas, for light, heat or power.
"Gas company" includes every corporation, company, association, joint stock association, partnership and person, their lessees, trustees or receiver appointed by any court whatsoever, and every city or town, owning, controlling, operating or managing any gas plant within this state.
"Electric plant" includes all real estate, fixtures and personal property operated, owned, used or to be used for or in connection with or to facilitate the generation, transmission, distribution, sale or furnishing of electricity for light, heat, or power for hire; and any conduits, ducts or other devices, materials, apparatus or property for containing, holding or carrying conductors used or to be used for the transmission of electricity for light, heat or power.
"Electrical company" includes any corporation, company, association, joint stock association, partnership and person, their lessees, trustees or receivers appointed by any court whatsoever (other than a railroad or street railroad company generating electricity solely for railroad or street railroad purposes or for the use of its tenants and not for sale to others), and every city or town owning, operating or managing any electric plant for hire within this state. "Electrical company" does not include a company or person employing a cogeneration facility solely for the generation of electricity for its own use or the use of its tenants or for sale to an electrical company, state or local public agency, municipal corporation, or quasi municipal corporation engaged in the sale or distribution of electrical energy, but not for sale to others, unless such company or person is otherwise an electrical company.
"LATA" means a local access transport area as defined by the commission in conformance with applicable federal law.
"Private telecommunications system" means a telecommunications system controlled by a person or entity for the sole and exclusive use of such person, entity, or affiliate thereof, including the provision of private shared telecommunications services by such person or entity. "Private telecommunications system" does not include a system offered for hire, sale, or resale to the general public.
"Private shared telecommunications services" includes the provision of telecommunications and information management services and equipment within a user group located in discrete private premises in building complexes, campuses, or high-rise buildings, by a commercial shared services provider or by a user association, through privately owned customer premises equipment and associated data processing and information management services and includes the provision of connections to the facilities of a local exchange and to interexchange telecommunications companies.
"Radio communications service company" includes every corporation, company, association, joint stock association, partnership, and person, their lessees, trustees, or receivers appointed by any court, and every city or town making available facilities to provide radio communications service, radio paging, or cellular communications service for hire, sale, or resale.
"Telecommunications company" includes every corporation, company, association, joint stock association, partnership and person, their lessees, trustees or receivers appointed by any court whatsoever, and every city or town owning, operating or managing any facilities used to provide telecommunications for hire, sale, or resale to the general public within this state.
"Noncompetitive telecommunications service" means any service which has not been classified as competitive by the commission.
"Facilities" means lines, conduits, ducts, poles, wires, cables, cross-arms, receivers, transmitters, instruments, machines, appliances, instrumentalities and all devices, real estate, easements, apparatus, property and routes used, operated, owned or controlled by any telecommunications company to facilitate the provision of telecommunications service.
"Telecommunications" is the transmission of information by wire, radio, optical cable, electromagnetic, or other similar means. As used in this definition, "information" means knowledge or intelligence represented by any form of writing, signs, signals, pictures, sounds, or any other symbols.
"Water system" includes all real estate, easements, fixtures, personal property, dams, dikes, head gates, weirs, canals, reservoirs, flumes or other structures or appliances operated, owned, used or to be used for or in connection with or to facilitate the supply, storage, distribution, sale, furnishing, diversion, carriage, apportionment or measurement of water for power, irrigation, reclamation, manufacturing, municipal, domestic or other beneficial uses for hire.
"Water company" includes every corporation, company, association, joint stock association, partnership and person, their lessees, trustees or receivers appointed by any court whatsoever, and every city or town owning, controlling, operating, or managing any water system for hire within this state: PROVIDED, That for purposes of commission jurisdiction it shall not include any water system serving less than one hundred customers where the average annual gross revenue per customer does not exceed three hundred dollars per year, which revenue figure may be increased annually by the commission by rule adopted pursuant to chapter 34.05 RCW to reflect the rate of inflation as determined by the implicit price deflator of the United States department of commerce: AND PROVIDED FURTHER, That such measurement of customers or revenues shall include all portions of water companies having common ownership, regardless of location or corporate designation. "Water company" also includes, for auditing purposes only, nonmunicipal water systems which are referred to the commission pursuant to an administrative order from the department, or the city or county as provided in RCW 80.04.110. However, water companies exempt from commission regulation shall be subject to the provisions of chapter 19.86 RCW. A water company cannot be removed from regulation except with the approval of the commission. Water companies subject to regulation may petition the commission for removal from regulation if the number of customers falls below one hundred or the average annual revenue per customer falls below three hundred dollars. The commission is authorized to maintain continued regulation if it finds that the public interest so requires.
"Cogeneration facility" means any machinery, equipment, structure, process, or property, or any part thereof, installed or acquired for the primary purpose of the sequential generation of electrical or mechanical power and useful heat from the same primary energy source or fuel.
"Public service company" includes every gas company, electrical company, telecommunications company, and water company. Ownership or operation of a cogeneration facility does not, by itself, make a company or person a public service company.
"Local exchange company" means a telecommunications company providing local exchange telecommunications service.
means the department of ((
social and)) health (( services)).
The term "service" is used in this title in its broadest and most inclusive sense.
Sec. 2. RCW 80.04.110 and 1989 c 207 s 2 and 1989 c 101 s 17 are each reenacted and amended to read as follows:
Complaint may be made by the commission of its own motion or by any person or corporation, chamber of commerce, board of trade, or any commercial, mercantile, agricultural or manufacturing society, or any body politic or municipal corporation, or by the public counsel section of the office of the attorney general, or its successor, by petition or complaint in writing, setting forth any act or thing done or omitted to be done by any public service corporation in violation, or claimed to be in violation, of any provision of law or of any order or rule of the commission: PROVIDED, That no complaint shall be entertained by the commission except upon its own motion, as to the reasonableness of the schedule of the rates or charges of any gas company, electrical company, water company, or telecommunications company, unless the same be signed by the mayor, council or commission of the city or town in which the company complained of is engaged in business, or not less than twenty-five consumers or purchasers of such gas, electricity, water or telecommunications service, or at least twenty-five percent of the consumers or purchasers of the company's service: PROVIDED, FURTHER, That when two or more public service corporations, (meaning to exclude municipal and other public corporations) are engaged in competition in any locality or localities in the state, either may make complaint against the other or others that the rates, charges, rules, regulations or practices of such other or others with or in respect to which the complainant is in competition, are unreasonable, unremunerative, discriminatory, illegal, unfair or intending or tending to oppress the complainant, to stifle competition, or to create or encourage the creation of monopoly, and upon such complaint or upon complaint of the commission upon its own motion, the commission shall have power, after notice and hearing as in other cases, to, by its order, subject to appeal as in other cases, correct the abuse complained of by establishing such uniform rates, charges, rules, regulations or practices in lieu of those complained of, to be observed by all of such competing public service corporations in the locality or localities specified as shall be found reasonable, remunerative, nondiscriminatory, legal, and fair or tending to prevent oppression or monopoly or to encourage competition, and upon any such hearing it shall be proper for the commission to take into consideration the rates, charges, rules, regulations and practices of the public service corporation or corporations complained of in any other locality or localities in the state.
All matters upon which complaint may be founded may be joined in one hearing, and no motion shall be entertained against a complaint for misjoinder of complaints or grievances or misjoinder of parties; and in any review of the courts of orders of the commission the same rule shall apply and pertain with regard to the joinder of complaints and parties as herein provided: PROVIDED, All grievances to be inquired into shall be plainly set forth in the complaint. No complaint shall be dismissed because of the absence of direct damage to the complainant.
Upon the filing of a complaint, the commission shall cause a copy thereof to be served upon the person or corporation complained of, which shall be accompanied by a notice fixing the time when and place where a hearing will be had upon such complaint. The time fixed for such hearing shall not be less than ten days after the date of the service of such notice and complaint, excepting as herein provided. The commission shall enter its final order with respect to a complaint filed by any entity or person other than the commission within ten months from the date of filing of the complaint, unless the date is extended for cause. Rules of practice and procedure not otherwise provided for in this title may be prescribed by the commission. Such rules may include the requirement that a complainant use informal processes before filing a formal complaint.
commission shall, as appropriate, ((
exercise auditing and accounting
supervision or initiate a complaint)) audit a nonmunicipal water system
upon receipt of an administrative order from the department, or the city or
county in which the water system is located, finding that the water delivered
by a system does not meet state board of health standards adopted under RCW
43.20.050(2)(a) or standards adopted under chapter 70.116 RCW and the
results of the audit shall be provided to the requesting department, city, or
county. However, the number of nonmunicipal water systems referred to the
commission in any one calendar year shall not exceed twenty percent of the
water companies subject to commission regulation as defined in RCW 80.04.010.
Every nonmunicipal water system referred to the commission for audit under this section shall pay to the commission an audit fee in an amount, based on the system's twelve-month audited period, equal to the fee required to be paid by regulated companies under RCW 80.24.010.