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A. Installation In New Developments:
1. All permanent electric and telephone lines, excluding main feeder lines and high voltage electric transmission lines in excess of fifteen (15) kilovolts' capacity, and all other communication circuits and services as defined in the national electrical code shall be placed underground when installed in the following areas or when installed for the following types of customers:
a. In all new residential subdivisions or plats, whether for single-family residences or multiple dwellings.
b. To all new commercial or industrial developments.
2. All owners, platters or developers of the types of development listed in subsection A1 of this section are responsible for complying with the requirements of this section and, prior to the final approval of any plat or development plan or permit issuance, shall submit to the city planning commission written instruments from the appropriate utility companies showing that all necessary arrangements with said companies for underground installation of such facilities have been made.
B. Installation In Existing Developments; Underground Utility District:
1. The city council may, by resolution, upon receiving a petition signed by a majority of the owners of real property to be benefited, designate any area of the city as an underground utility district, and within such a district, all lines and circuits designated in subsection A of this section shall be required thereby to be placed underground within a period of time set by the council. The council shall also set the time within which affected property owners must be ready to receive underground service. The cost of such underground installation may be assessed by the city against benefiting properties as a public improvement following the procedures set out by Minnesota statutes concerning special assessments. In determining the cost of said installation, the city shall take into consideration the value of the overhead lines to be replaced and the cost of removing same, and the cost of obtaining new easements when such must be obtained. (Ord. 1979-3, 7-2-1979)
2. No assessment levied under this section shall be declared void nor shall any such assessment or part thereof be set aside in consequence of any error or irregularity permitted or appearing in any of the proceedings under this section. (Ord. 1979-3, 7-2-1979; amd. 2005 Code)
3. It shall be the responsibility of any utility customer within an underground utility district to sustain the expense of rewiring in order to accept an underground service which was provided pursuant to this section for that portion of the service which is usually and customarily the responsibility of the customer.
4. If underground installation in an underground utility district is not to be assessed, the city shall provide for such installation by direct agreement with the applicable utility companies.
C. Repair And Maintenance Of Existing Overhead Installations: Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent the repair, maintenance, reconstruction, replacement or modification of existing overhead utility lines.
D. Exceptions: The requirements of this section shall apply unless the city council specifically shall find, after study and recommendation by the planning commission, that:
1. The placing of utilities underground would not be compatible with the planned, existing or surrounding development; or
2. The additional cost of undergrounding such utilities would create an undue financial hardship; or
3. Topographical, soil, or any other conditions make the underground installation unreasonable or impractical.
E. Misdemeanor Violation: Any person or firm violating any provision of this section or any official action taken under the authority of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be subject to the applicable penalties therefor, with each day constituting a separate violation. (Ord. 1979-3, 7-2-1979)