On October 25, 2019, the Commission issued an Order in Case No. 19-3603-RULE (the “Order”), proposing amendments to Commission Rule 3.706(D)(1) (the “Rule”), which establishes the rental rates for attaching certain equipment to utility-owned poles. The amendments originally were sought by the CLEC Association of Northern New England. The amendments, as proposed, would change the Rule so that it contains a single, rebuttable presumption that equipment attached to a utility pole occupies one foot of space. This proposed presumption would replace our current practice of presuming that an attachment occupies either 1 foot or 2 feet of space, depending on the type of service offered by the entity requesting the attachment.
In the Order, the Commission finds it in the best interest of Vermont to set a single pole-attachment presumption of 1.25 feet for all entities attaching equipment to utility poles in Vermont, no matter the function of those attachments or the type of entity attaching. This change will result in improved competition among market participants, increased investment in Vermont, a Rule more closely aligned with the practices of the Federal Communications Commission and other nearby jurisdictions in New England, and fewer disputes over the application of the Rule.
On October 24, 2019, the Commission filed the proposed amendments to the Rule with the Interagency Committee on Administrative Rules (“ICAR”). The Commission has been invited to present the proposed changes at ICAR’s November 13, 2019, meeting. The meeting is scheduled to occur at 2:00 PM at the Pavilion Office Building, Fifth Floor Conference Room, 109 State Street, Montpelier, VT 05609.
After the November 13, 2019, ICAR meeting, the Commission will issue dates for a public hearing on the proposed amendments and will establish dates during which public comments can be filed with the Commission. This information will be shared with participants on the Case’s service list and will be posted on this website once the Commission makes its determination.
This rulemaking is being processed in ePUC, the Commission’s online document management system. All documents associated with this proceeding will appear in ePUC as they become available. Assistance in using ePUC can be acquired by contacting the Clerk’s Office at (802) 828-2358 or email.
Interested in participating in this proceeding? Please contact the Clerk of the Commission and ask to be added to the service list.
Contact Staff Attorney John C. Gerhard by e-mail or telephone (802-828-2358) if you have any questions about this rulemaking that do not involve ePUC.