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(A) Underground utility district. The City Council may, by resolution, upon receiving a petition signed by a majority of the owners of real property to be benefitted, designate any area of the city as an underground utility district, and within such a district all lines and circuits designated in this chapter 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.
(B) Costs assessed.
(1) The cost of underground installation under division (A) above may be assessed by the city against benefitting properties as a public improvement following a public hearing and in full accordance with the provisions of this chapter.
(2) In determining the cost of said installation, the applicable utility companies shall be entitled to amounts sufficient to repay them for the following as computed and reflected by the existing regulations and procedures of the Federal Power Commission and the Federal Communications Commission:
(a) The original cost less depreciation taken of the existing overhead electric and telephone facilities to be removed;
(b) The estimated cost of removing such overhead electric and telephone facilities less the salvage value of the facilities removed;
(c) The cost difference between the estimated cost of constructing new overhead facilities and the cost of constructing the underground facilities, less the cost of the betterment; and
(d) The cost of obtaining new easements when technical considerations make it reasonably necessary to utilize easements for the underground facilities different from those used for the overhead facilities.
(3) No assessment levied under this chapter 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 chapter or any other provision of this chapter.
(4) 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.
(C) Costs not assessed, procedure. 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.
(Ord. 2009-06, passed 4-14-2009)