CA Pub Util Code Section 325


The Legislature hereby finds and declares that the commission should have the authority to act swiftly to expedite planning for the long-term recovery in parts of the state which have been declared national disaster areas and in which severe damage to or destruction of existing utility facilities has occurred and to adopt expedited procedures for that purpose.


The commission shall, therefore, review existing rules, regulations, and orders and develop and adopt new rules, regulations, or orders, as may be appropriate or necessary to establish expedited procedures to be followed in the event that a determination is made by the President of the United States that an emergency exists, of the severity and magnitude that effective response is beyond the capabilities of the state and the affected local governments and that federal assistance is necessary pursuant to Section 5191 of Title 42 of the United States Code Annotated. The procedures shall require a determination by the commission, upon application of a utility or other interested party, that the emergency has resulted in severe damage or destruction to an existing utility’s facilities or existing utilities’ facilities under the jurisdiction of the commission. The rules and regulations shall be developed consistent with existing rules and regulations pursuant to the authority granted to the commission in Sections 701 and 1701. The expedited procedures shall not prevent or otherwise interfere with a utility’s ability promptly to restore service to its customers requiring the service, and to recover the reasonable costs associated with the restoration of service, as determined by the commission. The expedited procedures shall be adopted by the commission on or before January 1, 1994.


In developing the expedited procedures, the commission shall consider, among other things, the following:


Once the President declares that an emergency exists, the extent to which the expedited procedures should become effective.


The extent to which the expedited procedures should take precedence over any conflicting rule, regulation, or order which may impede any appropriate or necessary decisions and actions by the commission.


If the expedited procedures become effective, the scope of relief which may be sought and granted pursuant thereto, including, but not limited to, the following:


A determination of the applicability of existing commission rules, regulations, and orders.


An exemption from those existing rules and regulations.


The time period following the date of the declaration of an emergency by the President, within which any affected city or county within the declared disaster area or public utility serving all or a portion of the county or city thereof, may apply to the commission for relief.


The need, if any, for referral of any application to an administrative law judge, and the need, if any, for formal evidentiary hearings.


No utility shall be required to proceed to incur any costs pursuant to commission order issued under these expedited procedures until arrangements satisfactory to the affected utility have been made for payment of the excess, if any, of the estimated costs of completing the work contemplated by the commission order over the amount of the costs allocated to the ratepayers by the commission order.


The expedited procedures shall preserve the right of interested parties to reasonable notice and an opportunity to be heard, as required by applicable law. The expedited procedures shall provide that in the event of an emergency as defined in this section, the commission has the authority to waive the referral of the application to an administrative law judge, and has the authority to act on the application.


In the event that the President has declared that an emergency exists, pursuant to federal law, after January 1, 1993, and before the adoption of emergency procedures by the commission, the commission is authorized, and empowered to act expeditiously upon the direct request of any affected city or county or public utility serving all or a portion of the city or county, for relief; and to adopt expedited measures and procedures which the commission determines to be necessary or appropriate, including, but not limited to, the considerations set forth above in subdivision (c).
Last Updated

Aug. 19, 2023

§ 325’s source at ca​.gov