Article 1. Specified Utilities of California Public Utilities Code >> Division 1. >> Part 1. >> Chapter 5. >> Article 1.
No railroad corporation whose railroad is operated primarily
by electric energy, street railroad corporation, gas corporation,
electrical corporation, telegraph corporation, telephone corporation,
water corporation, or sewer system corporation shall begin the
construction of a street railroad, or of a line, plant, or system, or
of any extension thereof, without having first obtained from the
commission a certificate that the present or future public
convenience and necessity require or will require such construction.
This article shall not be construed to require any such
corporation to secure such certificate for an extension within any
city or city and county within which it has theretofore lawfully
commenced operations, or for an extension into territory either
within or without a city or city and county contiguous to its street
railroad, or line, plant, or system, and not theretofore served by a
public utility of like character, or for an extension within or to
territory already served by it, necessary in the ordinary course of
its business. If any public utility, in constructing or extending its
line, plant, or system, interferes or is about to interfere with the
operation of the line, plant, or system of any other public utility
or of the water system of a public agency, already constructed, the
commission, on complaint of the public utility or public agency
claiming to be injuriously affected, may, after hearing, make such
order and prescribe such terms and conditions for the location of the
lines, plants, or systems affected as to it may seem just and
(a) The commission shall exempt the construction of any
line, plant, or system, or extension thereof, located outside the
boundaries of the state from the requirements of Section 1001, upon
the application of the public utility constructing that line, plant,
or system, or extension thereof, if the public utility derives 75
percent or more of its operating revenues from outside the state, as
recorded in the fiscal period immediately before the filing of the
application, unless the commission determines that the public
interest requires that the construction should not be exempt from
(b) Except as provided in subdivision (c), the commission shall
make the determination denying the exemption, as specified in
subdivision (a), within 90 days after the public utility files the
application for exemption with the commission. If the commission
fails to make this determination within that 90-day period, the
construction of that line, plant, or system, or extension thereof, is
exempt from the requirements of Section 1001.
(c) The commission and the public utility filing the application
for exemption may, if both agree, extend the time period within which
the commission is required to make the determination denying the
exemption, for not more than an additional 60 days after the
expiration of the 90-day period specified in subdivision (b).
(a) The commission, as a basis for granting any certificate
pursuant to Section 1001 shall give consideration to the following
(1) Community values.
(2) Recreational and park areas.
(3) Historical and aesthetic values.
(4) Influence on environment, except that in the case of any line,
plant, or system or extension thereof located in another state which
will be subject to environmental impact review pursuant to the
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (Chapter 55 (commencing
with Section 4321) of Title 42 of the United States Code) or similar
state laws in the other state, the commission shall not consider
influence on the environment unless any emissions or discharges
therefrom would have a significant influence on the environment of
(b) With respect to any thermal powerplant or electrical
transmission line for which a certificate is required pursuant to the
provisions of Division 15 (commencing with Section 25000) of the
Public Resources Code, no certificate of public convenience and
necessity shall be granted pursuant to Section 1001 without such
other certificate having been obtained first, and the decision
granting such other certificate shall be conclusive as to all matters
determined thereby and shall take the place of the requirement for
consideration by the commission of the four factors specified in
subdivision (a) of this section.
In considering an application for a certificate for an
electric transmission facility pursuant to Section 1001, the
commission shall consider cost-effective alternatives to transmission
facilities that meet the need for an efficient, reliable, and
affordable supply of electricity, including, but not limited to,
demand-side alternatives such as targeted energy efficiency,
ultraclean distributed generation, as defined in Section 353.2, and
other demand reduction resources.
In issuing a certificate of convenience and necessity for
additional natural gas pipeline capacity proposed for construction
within this state, the commission shall consider the state's need to
provide sufficient and competitively priced natural gas supplies for
both present and anticipated future residential, industrial,
commercial, and utility demand. When it finds that it is in the state'
s best interests to do so, the commission shall expeditiously issue
certificates of convenience and necessity for those additional
natural gas pipeline capacity projects.
Every electrical and every gas corporation submitting an
application to the commission for a certificate authorizing the new
construction of any electric plant, line, or extension, or gas plant,
line, or extension, not subject to the provisions of Chapter 6
(commencing with Section 25500) of Division 15 of the Public
Resources Code, shall include all of the following information in the
application in addition to any other required information:
(a) Preliminary engineering and design information on the project.
The design information provided for thermal electric plants shall
include preliminary data regarding the operating characteristics of
the proposed plant, including, but not limited to, the annual
capacity factor, availability factor, and the heat rate for each year
of the useful life of the plant, line, or extension.
(b) A project implementation plan showing how the project would be
contracted for and constructed. This plan shall show how all major
tasks would be integrated and shall include a timetable identifying
the design, construction, completion, and operation dates for each
major component of the plant, line, or extension.
(c) An appropriate cost estimate, including preliminary estimates
of the costs of financing, construction, and operation, including
fuel, maintenance, and dismantling or inactivation after the useful
life of the plant, line, or extension.
(d) A cost analysis comparing the project with any feasible
alternative sources of power. The corporation shall demonstrate the
financial impact of the plant, line, or extension construction on the
corporation's ratepayers, stockholders, and on the cost of the
corporation's borrowed capital. The cost analyses shall be performed
for the projected useful life of the plant, line, or extension,
including dismantling or inactivation after the useful life of the
plant, line, or extension.
(e) A design and construction management and cost control plan
which indicates the contractual and working responsibilities and
interrelationships between the corporation's management and other
major parties involved in the project. This plan shall also include a
construction progress information system and specific cost controls.
Every electrical and gas corporation submitting an
application to the commission for a certificate authorizing the new
construction of an electric plant, line, or extension, or gas plant,
line, or extension, which is subject to the provisions of Chapter 6
(commencing with Section 25500) of Division 15 of the Public
Resources Code, shall include in the application the information
specified in subdivisions (b), (c), and (e) of Section 1003, in
addition to any other required information. The corporation may also
include in the application any other information specified in Section
Before any certificate may issue, under this article, a
certified copy of its articles of incorporation or charter, if the
applicant is a corporation, shall be filed in the office of the
commission. Every applicant for a certificate shall file in the
office of the commission such evidence as is required by the
commission to show that the applicant has received the required
consent, franchise, or permit of the proper county, city and county,
city, or other public authority.
(a) The commission may, with or without hearing, issue the
certificate as prayed for, or refuse to issue it, or issue it for the
construction of a portion only of the contemplated street railroad
line, plant, or system, or extension thereof, or for the partial
exercise only of the right or privilege, and may attach to the
exercise of the rights granted by the certificate such terms and
conditions, including provisions for the acquisition by the public of
the franchise or permit and all rights acquired thereunder and all
works constructed or maintained by authority thereof, as in its
judgment the public convenience and necessity require; provided,
however, upon timely application for a hearing by any person entitled
to be heard thereat, the commission, before issuing or refusing to
issue the certificate, shall hold a hearing thereon.
(b) When the commission issues a certificate for the new
construction of a gas or electric plant, line, or extension, the
certificate shall specify the operating and cost characteristics of
the plant, line, or extension, including, but not limited to, the
size, capacity, cost, and all other characteristics of the plant,
line, or extension which are specified in the information which the
gas and electrical corporations are required to submit, pursuant to
Section 1003 or 1003. 5.
(a) The commission shall issue a decision on an application
for a certificate within 18 months of the date of filing of the
completed application, when all of the following are true:
(1) The application is for a certificate for building or upgrading
an electrical transmission line that the commission finds necessary
to provide transmission to load centers for electricity generated in
a high priority renewable energy zone or is reasonably necessary to
facilitate achievement of the renewables portfolio standard
established in Article 16 (commencing with Section 399.11) of Chapter
(2) The commission has considered all of the following:
(A) The utilization of rights-of-way by upgrading existing
transmission facilities instead of building new transmission
facilities, where technically and economically justifiable.
(B) The expansion of existing rights-of-way, if technically and
economically feasible, when construction of new transmission lines is
(C) The creation of new rights-of-way when justified by
environmental, technical, and economic reasons.
(D) The availability of cost-effective alternatives to
transmission, such as energy efficiency measures and distributed
(3) The commission has not expressly found any of the following:
(A) That the investment is not reasonable and necessary to
maintain or enhance reliability of the transmission grid.
(B) That the building or upgrading of the electrical transmission
line will not maintain or enhance efficient use of the transmission
(C) That the transmission line fails to meet other applicable
standards and requirements for approval and construction.
(b) An extension of time may be granted by the commission if it
finds the extension is necessary for completion of review pursuant to
the California Environmental Quality Act (Division 13 (commencing
with Section 21000) of the Public Resources Code).
(a) Whenever the commission issues to an electrical or gas
corporation a certificate authorizing the new construction of any
addition to or extension of the corporation's plant estimated to cost
greater than fifty million dollars ($50,000,000), the commission
shall specify in the certificate a maximum cost determined to be
reasonable and prudent for the facility. The commission shall
determine the maximum cost using an estimate of the anticipated
construction cost, taking into consideration the design of the
project, the expected duration of construction, an estimate of the
effects of economic inflation, and any known engineering difficulties
associated with the project.
(b) After the certificate has been issued, the corporation may
apply to the commission for an increase in the maximum cost specified
in the certificate. The commission may authorize an increase in the
specified maximum cost if it finds and determines that the cost has
in fact increased and that the present or future public convenience
and necessity require construction of the project at the increased
cost; otherwise, it shall deny the application.
(c) After construction has commenced, the corporation may apply to
the commission for authorization to discontinue construction and
recover those costs which were reasonably and prudently incurred.
After a showing to the satisfaction of the commission that the
present or future public convenience and necessity no longer require
the completion of construction of the project, the commission may
authorize discontinuance of construction and the recovery of those
construction costs which were reasonable and prudent.
(d) In any decision establishing rates for an electrical or gas
corporation reflecting the reasonable and prudent costs of the new
construction of any addition to or extension of the corporation's
plant, when the commission has found and determined that the addition
or extension is used and useful, the commission shall consider
whether or not the actual costs of construction are within the
maximum cost specified by the commission.
When a complaint has been filed with the commission alleging
that a public utility of the class specified in Section 1001 is
engaged or is about to engage in construction work without having
secured from the commission a certificate of public convenience and
necessity as required by this article, the commission may, with or
without notice, make its order requiring the public utility
complained of to cease and desist from such construction until the
commission makes and files its decision on the complaint or until the
further order of the commission.
The commission may, after notice and hearing, prior to
authorizing any water or sewer system corporation having annual gross
operating revenues under two hundred thousand dollars ($200,000) to
construct, operate, acquire, expand, or improve its line, plant, or
system, prescribe, as a condition to granting such authority, that
the corporation file with the commission a bond with sufficient
sureties, subject to approval of the commission, in a reasonable
amount not exceeding fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) payable to the
commission and conditioned on the corporation's furnishing adequate
and sufficient service within its service area. The commission may,
after notice and hearing, declare all or any part of the bond
forfeited after finding that the corporation has willfully failed to
furnish adequate and sufficient service without just cause or excuse
and that such failure has continued for an unreasonable duration.
Such bond shall further provide for payment to the commission of the
amount of any penalty assessed against the corporation pursuant to
Section 2107. The commission may, upon petition by a water or sewer
system corporation, for good cause, reduce the amount or eliminate
the requirement of any bond which it has required to be filed
pursuant to this section.
No corporation or person shall begin to operate or cause to
be operated any vessel for the transportation of persons or property,
for compensation, between points in this state, without first having
obtained from the commission a certificate declaring that public
convenience and necessity require such operation, but no such
certificate shall be required as to termini between which any such
corporation or person is lawfully operating vessels in good faith
under this part as it existed prior to August 17, 1923, under tariffs
and schedules of such corporations or persons, lawfully on file with
the commission. Every applicant for such a certificate shall file in
the office of the commission application and evidence in the form
required by the commission. The commission may, with or without
hearing, issue the certificate as prayed for, or refuse to issue it,
or issue it for the partial exercise only of the privilege sought, or
issue it for operation between certain points only, and may attach
to the exercise of the rights granted by the certificate such terms
and conditions as, in its judgment, the public convenience and
The commission, in the exercise of the jurisdiction
conferred upon it by the Constitution of the state and by this part,
and consistent with Section 9 of Article I of the California
Constitution and Section 10 of Article I of the United States
Constitution, may grant certificates of public convenience and
necessity, make decisions and orders, and prescribe rules affecting
vessel common carriers notwithstanding the provisions of any
ordinance, permit, or franchise of any city, county, or other
political subdivision of this state, and in the case of conflict
between any certificate, decision, order, or rule of the commission
and any ordinance, permit, or franchise, the certificate, decision,
order, or rule of the commission shall prevail.
Any municipal corporation or port district operating or
maintaining a port may apply to the commission for the issuance of a
certificate of convenience and necessity to require any person or
corporation operating vessels between points in this State, to serve
that port. The commission may, after hearing, issue the certificate
as prayed for, or refuse to issue it, or issue it for the partial
exercise of the rights granted by any such certificate, upon such
terms and conditions as in its judgment the public convenience and
necessity require, and upon making the order the person or
corporation to which the certificate is issued, shall be compelled to
perform the service.
Any right, privilege, franchise, or permit held, owned or
obtained by any person or corporation for the operation of vessels
between points in this State may be sold, assigned, leased,
transferred, or inherited as other property, only upon authorization
by the commission. The commission may at any time for a good cause
suspend, and upon notice to the grantee of any certificate or
operative right and opportunity to be heard revoke, alter, or amend
any certificate or operative right issued or existing under the
provisions of Sections 1007 or 1008.
The provisions of this article are enacted under the State's
reserved power over public utilities or corporations, or both, as the
case may be, for the purpose of acting on the right of the grantee
of a public utility franchise granted by a city, county, or city and
county, to exercise rights thereunder, and not for the purpose of
acting on the right of any city or city and county to grant any such
franchise. The Legislature hereby declares that the provisions of
this article shall remain in full force and effect concurrently with
the right of any city or city and county to grant franchises for
public utilities upon the terms and conditions and in the manner
prescribed by law.
(a) The commission may by rule or order, partially or
completely exempt certain telecommunications services offered by
telephone and telegraph corporations from the certification
requirements of Section 1001 and instead subject them to registration
as the commission may determine. Telephone corporations that the
commission determines have monopoly power or market power in a
relevant market or markets shall have a certificate of public
convenience and necessity and shall not be eligible for designation
as registered telephone corporations. A telephone corporation that
has been found not to have monopoly power or market power in a
relevant market or markets by the commission shall be eligible for
registration subject to the approval of the commission. A telephone
corporation operating in this state shall either have a certificate
of public convenience and necessity or be registered under this
section or be a telephone corporation authorized to operate in
California without a certificate of public convenience and necessity.
(b) Registered telephone corporations qualifying under this
section shall maintain an active registration with the commission at
all times and comply with commission rules and regulations
established for registered telephone corporations qualifying under
(c) The registration of registered telephone corporations
qualifying under this section shall be on a form prescribed by the
commission and shall contain any information the commission may by
rule or order require, but shall include as a minimum the name and
address of the telephone corporation's registered agent, if any, the
name, address, and title of each officer or director, and a
description of the telecommunications services it offers or intends
(d) Prior to designating any telephone corporation for
registration status, the commission shall adopt rules to do both of
(1) Verify the financial viability of the corporation.
(2) Verify that the officers of the corporation have no prior
history of committing fraud on the public.
(e) The commission shall require as a precondition to registration
the procurement of a performance bond sufficient to cover taxes or
fees, or both, collected from customers and held for remittance and
advances or deposits the telecommunications company may collect from
its customers, or order that those advances or deposits be held in
escrow or trust.
(f) The commission may require, as a precondition to registration,
the procurement of a performance bond sufficient to facilitate the
collection of fines, penalties, and restitution related to
enforcement actions that can be taken against a telecommunications
(g) The commission may, with or without a hearing, grant a
telephone corporation registration status and an exemption from the
certification requirements of Section 1001. However, upon timely
application, any person entitled to be heard may file a protest on
whether a telephone corporation should be eligible for registration
status and the granting of an exemption from the certification
requirement of Section 1001. Upon a determination that the protest
has presented a prima facie case that a telephone corporation should
not be granted registration status and an exemption from Section
1001, a hearing shall be held.
(h) The commission, after notice and a hearing if requested, may
cancel, revoke, or suspend the registration of any telephone
corporation upon any of the following grounds:
(1) The corporation does not provide the information required by
(2) The corporation fails to provide or maintain a performance
(3) The corporation conducts any illegal telephone operations.
(4) The corporation violates any of the applicable provisions of
this code or of any regulations issued thereunder.
(5) The corporation violates any order, decision, rule,
regulation, direction, demand, or requirement established by the
commission under this code.
(6) The corporation fails to pay any fee or fine imposed upon the
utility under this code.
(7) The corporation files a false statement to the commission.
(8) The corporation knowingly defrauds a customer.
(i) As an alternative to the cancellation, revocation, or
suspension of a registration, the commission, after notice and a
hearing, may impose upon the holder of the registration a fine in an
amount not to exceed twenty thousand dollars ($20,000) for each
offense, and order reparations and restitution to customers for each
(j) Every violation of this section or any part of any order,
decision, decree, rule, direction, demand, or requirement of the
commission, by any telephone corporation or person is a separate and
distinct offense, and in case of a continuing violation each day's
continuance thereof shall be a separate and distinct offense.
(k) In construing and enforcing this section relating to
penalties, the act, omission, or failure of any officer, agent, or
employee of any registered telephone corporation qualifying under
this section acting within the scope of his or her official duties or
employment, shall in every case be the act, omission, or failure of
the corporation. The commission may assess interest to commence upon
the day the payment is delinquent. All fines, assessments, and
interest collected shall be deposited at least once each month in the
(l) Actions to enforce the decision of the commission ordering the
payment of fines, reparations, or restitution under this section
shall be brought in the name of the people of the State of
California, in the superior court of the county, or city and county,
in which the corporation complained of, if any, has its principal
place of business, or in which the person, if any, complained of,
resides or in which the commission has offices. The enforcement of a
commission decision or order under this section shall be commenced
and prosecuted to final judgment by the attorney of the commission.
(m) The provisions of this section do not apply to commercial
mobile radio service.