2019 Florida Statutes
Interference caused by utility; expenses.
Interference caused by utility; expenses.
337.403 Interference caused by utility; expenses.—
(1) If a utility that is placed upon, under, over, or within the right-of-way limits of any public road or publicly owned rail corridor is found by the authority to be unreasonably interfering in any way with the convenient, safe, or continuous use, or the maintenance, improvement, extension, or expansion, of such public road or publicly owned rail corridor, the utility owner shall, upon 30 days’ written notice to the utility or its agent by the authority, initiate the work necessary to alleviate the interference at its own expense except as provided in paragraphs (a)-(j). The work must be completed within such reasonable time as stated in the notice or such time as agreed to by the authority and the utility owner.
(a) If the relocation of utility facilities, as referred to in s. 111 of the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956, Pub. L. No. 84-627, is necessitated by the construction of a project on the federal-aid interstate system, including extensions thereof within urban areas, and the cost of the project is eligible and approved for reimbursement by the Federal Government to the extent of 90 percent or more under the Federal-Aid Highway Act, or any amendment thereof, then in that event the utility owning or operating such facilities shall perform any necessary work upon notice from the department, and the state shall pay the entire expense properly attributable to such work after deducting therefrom any increase in the value of a new facility and any salvage value derived from an old facility.
(b) When a joint agreement between the department and the utility is executed for utility work to be accomplished as part of a contract for construction of a transportation facility, the department may participate in those utility work costs that exceed the department’s official estimate of the cost of the work by more than 10 percent. The amount of such participation is limited to the difference between the official estimate of all the work in the joint agreement plus 10 percent and the amount awarded for this work in the construction contract for such work. The department may not participate in any utility work costs that occur as a result of changes or additions during the course of the contract.
(c) When an agreement between the department and utility is executed for utility work to be accomplished in advance of a contract for construction of a transportation facility, the department may participate in the cost of clearing and grubbing necessary to perform such work.
(d) If the utility facility was initially installed to exclusively serve the authority or its tenants, or both, the authority shall bear the costs of the utility work. However, the authority is not responsible for the cost of utility work related to any subsequent additions to that facility for the purpose of serving others. For a county or municipality, if such utility facility was installed in the right-of-way as a means to serve a county or municipal facility on a parcel of property adjacent to the right-of-way and if the intended use of the county or municipal facility is for a use other than transportation purposes, the obligation of the county or municipality to bear the costs of the utility work shall extend only to utility work on the parcel of property on which the facility of the county or municipality originally served by the utility facility is located.
(e) If, under an agreement between a utility and the authority entered into after July 1, 2009, the utility conveys, subordinates, or relinquishes a compensable property right to the authority for the purpose of accommodating the acquisition or use of the right-of-way by the authority, without the agreement expressly addressing future responsibility for the cost of necessary utility work, the authority shall bear the cost of removal or relocation. This paragraph does not impair or restrict, and may not be used to interpret, the terms of any such agreement entered into before July 1, 2009.
(f) If the utility is an electric facility being relocated underground in order to enhance vehicular, bicycle, and pedestrian safety and in which ownership of the electric facility to be placed underground has been transferred from a private to a public utility within the past 5 years, the department shall incur all costs of the necessary utility work.
(g) An authority may bear the costs of utility work required to eliminate an unreasonable interference when the utility is not able to establish that it has a compensable property right in the particular property where the utility is located if:
1. The utility was physically located on the particular property before the authority acquired rights in the property;
2. The utility demonstrates that it has a compensable property right in adjacent properties along the alignment of the utility or, after due diligence, certifies that the utility does not have evidence to prove or disprove that it has a compensable property right in the particular property where the utility is located; and
3. The information available to the authority does not establish the relative priorities of the authority’s and the utility’s interests in the particular property.
(h) If a municipally owned utility or county-owned utility is located in a rural area of opportunity, as defined in s. 288.0656(2), and the department determines that the utility is unable, and will not be able within the next 10 years, to pay for the cost of utility work necessitated by a department project on the State Highway System, the department may pay, in whole or in part, the cost of such utility work performed by the department or its contractor.
(i) If the relocation of utility facilities is necessitated by the construction of a commuter rail service project or an intercity passenger rail service project and the cost of the project is eligible and approved for reimbursement by the Federal Government, then in that event the utility owning or operating such facilities located by permit on a department-owned rail corridor shall perform any necessary utility relocation work upon notice from the department, and the department shall pay the expense properly attributable to such utility relocation work in the same proportion as federal funds are expended on the commuter rail service project or an intercity passenger rail service project after deducting therefrom any increase in the value of a new facility and any salvage value derived from an old facility. In no event shall the state be required to use state dollars for such utility relocation work. This paragraph does not apply to any phase of the Central Florida Commuter Rail project, known as SunRail.
(j) If a utility is lawfully located within an existing and valid utility easement granted by recorded plat, regardless of whether such land was subsequently acquired by the authority by dedication, transfer of fee, or otherwise, the authority must bear the cost of the utility work required to eliminate an unreasonable interference. The authority shall pay the entire expense properly attributable to such work after deducting any increase in the value of a new facility and any salvage value derived from an old facility.
(2) If such utility work is incidental to work to be done on such road or publicly owned rail corridor, the notice shall be given at the same time the contract for the work is advertised for bids, or no less than 30 days before the commencement of such work by the authority, whichever occurs later.
(3) Whenever a notice from the authority requires such utility work and the owner thereof fails to perform the work at his or her own expense within the time stated in the notice or such other time as agreed to by the authority and the utility owner, the authority shall proceed to cause the utility work to be performed. The expense thereby incurred shall be paid out of any money available therefor, and such expense shall, except as provided in subsection (1), be charged against the owner and levied and collected and paid into the fund from which the expense of such relocation was paid.
History.—s. 129, ch. 29965, 1955; s. 1, ch. 57-135; s. 1, ch. 57-1978; ss. 23, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 143, ch. 84-309; s. 12, ch. 87-100; s. 28, ch. 94-237; s. 970, ch. 95-148; s. 25, ch. 99-385; s. 10, ch. 2009-85; s. 35, ch. 2012-174; s. 5, ch. 2014-169; s. 24, ch. 2015-2; s. 3, ch. 2016-44.
Note.—Former s. 338.19.