Proposed Revisions to Commission Rule 3.700, Pole Attachments

On September 9, 2019, the Interagency Committee on Administrative Rules (“ICAR”) approved proposed revisions to Commission Rule 3.700, the Pole Attachment Rule.  On September 12, 2019, the Commission filed the proposed rule with the Secretary of State’s Office.
The Commission is accepting written public comments on the proposed revisions through November 5, 2019.  Commenters are strongly encouraged to file their comments through ePUC (see information about ePUC below), but the Commission will also accept comments submitted via direct mail or email.  Additionally, the Commission is holding public hearings in Brattleboro and Montpelier to hear from the public on the proposed rule changes.  The hearing information is as follows:
          October 23, 2019, 6:30 P.M. 
          Brooks Memorial Library, Meeting Room
          224 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT 05301
          October 29, 2019, 6:30 P.M.
          Montpelier City Hall
          39 Main St., Montpelier, VT 05602
The proposed amendments to the rule are the product of proceedings in Case No. 19-0252-RULE, which was opened in response to a petition from the Vermont Department of Public Service and Act 79 of 2019.  Sections 19 and 20 of Act 79 require the Commission to revise Commission Rule 3.700 to include “one-touch make-ready” (“OTMR”) and self-help procedures for attachments to utility poles and to consider other measures designed to reduce delays associated with the utility pole preparation process.  OTMR and self-help allow attaching entities to do some utility pole preparation work using qualified contractors and to take over the pole-preparation process for some pole preparation work if certain deadlines are not met.  The provisions are similar to recent revisions to the Federal Communications Commission’s (“FCC”) rules on pole attachments, which apply in states that have elected not to regulate pole attachments.  Section 19 of Act 79 requires the Commission to file a final proposed rule with the Secretary of State and the Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules on or before December 1, 2019.
The draft rule, the Commission’s orders, all participant comments, and the filings submitted to the Interagency Committee on Administrative Rules and the Secretary of State are available through ePUC, the Commission’s electronic document management and filing system, in Case No. 19-0252-RULE.  Further information about using ePUC is available on the PUC website.
Contact PUC Staff Attorney Micah Howe  by email or phone (802-828-2358)  if you have any questions about this rulemaking.

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Judith C. Whitney
Clerk of the Commission
112 State Street
Montpelier, VT  05620-2701
(802) 828-2358
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