Chapter 12.21


12.21.010    Accommodation of utilities on rights-of-way.

12.21.020    Definitions.

12.21.030    Applications.

12.21.040    Utility permit types.

12.21.050    Revocation of permit, suspension of issuance and expiration.

12.21.060    Franchise.

12.21.070    Reserved.

12.21.080    Financial security.

12.21.090    Location.

12.21.100    Design.

12.21.110    Standards and codes.

12.21.120    Condition of facilities.

12.21.130    Interference with rights-of-way.

12.21.140    Relocation or removal of utility facilities.

12.21.150    Coordination of construction activities.

12.21.160    Engineer’s certification.

12.21.170    Construction schedule and notice of work.

12.21.180    Compliance with utility permit.

12.21.190    Display of utility permit.

12.21.200    Noncomplying work.

12.21.210    Completion of construction.

12.21.220    As-built drawings.

12.21.230    Underground facilities.

12.21.240    Overhead facilities – Power and communications.

12.21.250    Fiber optic systems.

12.21.260    Vegetation management.

12.21.270    Aesthetic and scenic considerations.

12.21.280    Installations on roadway bridges and structures.

12.21.290    Damage to property.

12.21.300    Damage to permittee’s facilities.

12.21.310    Repair and emergency work.

12.21.320    Restoration of rights-of-way.

12.21.330    Restoration of improvements.

12.21.340    Traffic control.

12.21.350    Eminent domain.

12.21.360    Indemnification.

12.21.365    Fees.

12.21.370    Violations – Penalties.

12.21.010 Accommodation of utilities on rights-of-way.

A. The Board finds that it is in the public interest of Cowlitz County to adopt regulations (hereinafter policy) to preserve and protect county rights-of-way, provide for the health and safety of the traveling public utilizing rights-of-way, and provide for an orderly process of installing utility facilities.

1. This policy shall apply to all franchises and permits issued pursuant to RCW 80.32.010 and 80.36.040 and Chapter 36.55 RCW, as to all public and private utility facilities, and to all installation, replacement, adjustment, maintenance, repair and relocation of utility facilities within the county rights-of-way, including but not limited to: electric power, telecommunications, telephone, cable television or video programming, telegraph, water, gas, all petroleum products, steam, chemicals, sewage, drainage, irrigation, and similar pipes, lines or cables.

2. All contractors, companies and installers of fiber optic cable shall obtain a permit from the county and receive approval prior to the installation of any fiber optic cable within county rights-of-way. These regulations cannot address all situations and conditions that may be encountered. Specific provisions contained in this chapter may not be appropriate for all locations and existing conditions. The policy is intended to assist, but not substitute for, competent work by both road and utility design and installation professionals. This policy is not intended to limit any innovative or creative effort which could result in better quality, better cost savings or improved safety characteristics.

B. These regulations may be subject to other local regulations or policies due to the overlap of utility regulations and policies. In the event of any conflict between these regulations or policies of the county, the regulations or policies which provide greater regulatory controls shall apply. No permit granted pursuant to this chapter shall remove the applicant’s obligation to comply in all respects with provision of any federal, state, or local law or regulation.

C. It shall be the responsibility of any utility provider installing or relocating any of its utility facilities to ascertain and abide by the requirements and conditions of these laws or regulations.

D. A copy of any amendments to this policy shall be forwarded to the County Road Administration Board within 30 days of such adoption pursuant to WAC 136-40-030. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.020 Definitions.

Unless otherwise stated, words and phrases used in this chapter shall have the following meanings:

“Applicant” means the owner of the utility or, if in the case of a private line, the owner of the property the line will serve.

“Appurtenance” means equipment and/or accessories which are a part of an operating utility system or subsystem.

“Backfill” means replacement of excavated material with suitable material compacted as specified.

“Bedding” means placement of suitable material to provide structural support and protect a pipe, conduit, casing or gallery.

“Board” means the Board of Cowlitz County Commissioners.

“Boring” means grade and alignment-controlled mechanical or other method of installing, such as hole hogging, a pipe or casing under a road without disturbing the surrounding medium.

“Carrier” means pipe directly enclosing a transmitted fluid or gas.

“Casing” means a larger pipe enclosing a carrier for the purpose of providing structural or other protection to the carrier and/or to allow for carrier replacement without re-excavation, jacking or boring.

“Coating” means protective material applied to the exterior or interior of a pipe, casing, carrier or conduit to prevent or reduce abrasion and/or corrosion damage.

“Conduit” means an enclosed tubular runway for protecting wires or cables.

“County” means Cowlitz County.

“Cover” means depth to top of pipe, conduit, casing or gallery below the grade of a road, shoulder or ditch.

“Director” means the Cowlitz County Director of Public Works or designee.

“Drain” means appurtenances to discharge accumulated liquids from casings or other enclosures.

“Emergency” means any condition constituting a clear and present danger to life or property, or a customer service outage.

“Encasement” means a structural element surrounding a pipe or conduit for the purpose of preventing physical damage to the pipe or conduit.

“Engineer” or “County Engineer” means the Cowlitz Road Engineer or designee under Chapter 36.80 RCW.

“Excavation” means any operation in which earth, rock, or other material on or below the ground is moved or otherwise displaced by any means, except the tilling of soil less than 12 inches in depth for agricultural purposes, or road and ditch maintenance that does not change the original road grade or ditch flowline.

“Fiber optics” means any form of communications transmission by glass wire strands that uses light to send data, video and sound.

“Franchise” means occupancy and use document granted by the county for occupancy of rights-of-way in accordance with Chapter 36.55 RCW and/or Chapter 80.32 RCW.

“Gallery” means an underpass for two or more utility lines.

Jacking. See “Boring.”

“Manhole” means an opening in an underground utility system into which workers or others may enter for the purpose of cleaning, testing, making installations, inspections, repairs and connections.

“MUTCD” refers to the current edition of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, as adopted by the State Department of Transportation and published by the United States Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration.

“Overhead facilities” means utility facilities and telecommunications facilities located above the surface of the ground, including the underground supports and foundations for such facilities.

“Pavement” means the combination of subbase, base course and surfacing placed on a subgrade to support the traffic load and distribute it to the subgrade.

“Permit” means a document issued under the authority of the County Engineer or Director. The permit provides specific requirements and conditions for specific utility work at specific locations within the rights-of-way.

“Permittee” means a utility owner or designated representative who has a utility facility within county rights-of-way or who has been granted certain rights and obligations as more fully described in this chapter.

“Pipe” means a structural tubular product designed, tested and produced for the transmittance of specific liquids and gases under specific conditions.

“Plowing” means direct burial of utility lines by means of a “plow” type mechanism, including but not limited to wheel trenching, which breaks the ground, places the utility line at a predetermined depth, and closes the break in the ground.

“Pressure” means internal gauge pressure in a pipe in pounds per square inch gauge (psig).

“Private lines” means privately owned, operated and maintained utility facilities devoted exclusively to the use of the owner.

“Relocation” means the changing of location of an existing utility facility or appurtenance to another location without changing the character or general physical nature of the utility facility or appurtenance.

“Replacement” means installation of a like element of a utility system or subsystem in the same or near-same physical location to function in place of an existing element normally due to damage, wear or obsolescence of the element.

“Restoration” means all work necessary to replace, repair or otherwise reestablish the rights-of-way and all features contained within it to the same or equal condition as it existed prior to any change or construction therein.

“Rights-of-way” includes the surface of and space above and below any real property in the county in which the county has any interest whether in fee or otherwise, or interest as a trustee for the public, as they now or hereafter exist, including, but not limited to, all public streets, highways, avenues, roads, reservoirs, alleys, sidewalks, tunnels, viaducts, bridges, skyways, or any other public place, area or property under the control of the county.

“Road” or “roadway” means a general term denoting a street, road or other public way, including shoulders, designated for the purpose of vehicular traffic.

“Road standards” means the most current version of the Cowlitz County road standards, on file with the Department of Public Works, Kelso, WA.

“Service connection” means a single connection made to a utility facility for the purpose of providing utility or telecommunication services.

“Service repair” means a repair made to a service connection.

“Significant tree” means a healthy tree (i.e., a tree that does not have a high probability of falling due to a debilitating disease or a structural defect) 24 inches in diameter at breast height (four and one-half feet above grade) located within the county rights-of-way or overhanging the rights-of-way.

“Sleeve” means a short casing through a pier, wall or abutment of a roadway structure.

“Standard specifications” means the Washington State Department of Transportation “Standard Specifications for Road, Bridge, and Municipal Construction,” current edition.

“Telecommunications facilities” means the plant, equipment and property within the county used to transmit, receive, distribute, provide or offer telecommunications service.

“Telecommunications service” means the providing or offering for rent, sale or lease, or in exchange for other value received, the transmittal of voice, data, image, graphic or video programming information or service(s) between or among points by wire, cable, fiber optics, laser, microwave, radio, satellite or similar facilities, with or without benefit of any closed transmission medium.

“Traffic control” means those activities necessary to safeguard the general public, as well as all workers, during the construction and maintenance of utility facilities within the rights-of-way.

“Trenched” means installation of a utility in an open excavation.

“Trenchless” means installation of a utility without breaking the ground or pavement surface such as by jacking or boring.

“Underground facilities” means utility or telecommunications facilities located under the surface of the ground and associated aboveground appurtenances including but not limited to communication pedestals, and pad mounted electrical transformers, alone or in combination, direct buried or in utility tunnels or conduits, excluding the underground foundations or supports for overhead facilities.

“Utility” means either: (1) a privately, publicly or cooperatively owned line, facility or system for producing, transmitting, or distributing communications, cable television, power, electricity, light, heat, gas, oil, crude products, water, steam, waste, sanitary sewer, storm drainage, surface water drainage, or any other similar commodity which directly or indirectly serves the public; or (2) the privately, publicly or cooperatively owned company or agency holding jurisdiction over the line, facility, or system.

“Utility facility” means privately, publicly or cooperatively owned plant, equipment and real or personal property including, but not limited to, the poles, pipes, mains, conduits, ducts, cables, wires, towers, buildings and equipment located under, on or above the surface of the ground within rights-of-way and used or to be used for the purpose of providing utility or telecommunications services.

“Utility provider” means any public, private, cooperative or special district or other public or private entity formed or operating for the purpose of providing, producing, transmitting, or distributing communications, cable television, power, electricity, light, heat, gas, gasoline, oil, crude products, water, steam, waste, sanitary sewer, storm drainage, surface water drainage, or any other similar commodity which directly or indirectly serves the public.

“Vent” means an appurtenance to discharge gaseous substances from casings or other enclosures. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.030 Applications.

Applications for annual and individual utility permits to construct, maintain, repair, relocate or remove utility facilities within the rights-of-way shall be submitted upon forms provided by the county. In addition to demonstrating compliance with this title, applications may need to be supplemented by construction reviews and approvals under CCC Title 16, development reviews and approvals under CCC Title 18, environmental reviews and approvals under CCC Title 19, and other franchises, permits or licenses, as applicable. The applicant shall pay all associated fees and shall include any additional information as requested by the Engineer.

The application shall be accompanied by a description of the utility facilities to be constructed, drawings, plans and specifications in sufficient detail to demonstrate:

A. That the utility facilities will be constructed in the rights-of-way in accordance with all applicable codes, rules, regulations, and such special conditions as the county may deem appropriate;

B. The location and route of all utility facilities to be installed on existing utility poles in the rights-of-way;

C. The location and route of all utility facilities in the rights-of-way to be located under the surface of the ground, including line and grade proposed for the burial;

D. To the extent such information is made accessible to the applicant, the location of all existing underground utilities, conduits, ducts, pipes, mains and installations which are within the rights-of-way along the route proposed by the applicant as located through the one-call system (Chapter 19.122 RCW);

E. The construction methods to be employed for protection of existing structures, fixtures and facilities within or adjacent to the rights-of-way;

F. The location and dimension of all significant trees that would be impacted by the project (e.g., tree removal, topping, locating aboveground and underground facilities within the drip line) and a detailed description of the proposed impacts on such trees;

G. The location of all monuments within or adjacent to (within 20 feet of the proposed construction limits) the proposed route, including all monuments that are anticipated to be removed or destroyed. (Note: Permits may be required by Chapter 332-120 WAC.)

H. Traffic control plan in accordance with CCC 12.21.340. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.040 Utility permit types.

A. All utility providers conducting work within county rights-of-way shall obtain a utility permit as follows, unless otherwise exempted hereunder.

1. Type A Activities. Type A activities include installing or replacing less than five new utility poles, installing short side utility services more than two feet off the edge of pavement, individual short side service connections with less than two hundred feet of underground installation, and removing two or fewer panels of Portland cement concrete sidewalk as well as any activity that is not a Type B activity and requires a traffic control plan per CCC 12.21.340. Utility providers conducting Type A activities within county rights-of-way shall obtain an annual utility permit. Upon obtaining an annual utility permit, all utility providers shall provide proper notification before starting any Type A activities and must provide written certification within 10 calendar days that the work was done in conformance with this chapter. The county may do random inspections of work conducted under an annual utility permit or franchise.

2. Type B Activities. Type B activities have a greater impact on the rights-of-way than Type A activities. Type B activities include individual service connections with more than 200 feet of underground installation, all roadway crossings, installing underground vaults, constructing splice pits, attaching to any bridge structure, installing main lines, and all other utility activities within county rights-of-way. Utility providers conducting Type B activities within county rights-of-way shall obtain an individual utility permit for each Type B activity.

B. Exempted Activities. Utility providers conducting the following exempted activities within county rights-of-way shall not be required to obtain a utility permit unless the activities require a traffic control plan in accordance with CCC 12.21.340; however, utility providers shall comply with all other provisions of this chapter: stringing cables on utility poles and associated maintenance thereof, accessing and maintenance of existing manholes, handholes, pedestals, closures and vaults, and replacing aboveground meters, transformers, closures, and pedestals. Emergency work shall also be exempt in accordance with CCC 12.21.310. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.050 Revocation of permit, suspension of issuance and expiration.

A. Upon written notice by the Engineer to the utility provider, the Engineer may revoke a utility provider’s annual utility permit at any time for gross noncompliance with county standards and this chapter which creates a public health and safety emergency, or a roadway and right-of-way stability or surface hazard. If approved by the Director, the annual utility permit will automatically be revoked by the Engineer after three written notifications of noncompliance on any terms of this chapter issued to the utility provider within any 12-month period. The revocation shall remain in effect until such time as the utility provider addresses the issues of noncompliance and corrective measures to the satisfaction of the Engineer. The Engineer may reissue the annual utility permit if corrective steps have been taken to ensure future compliance. If a utility provider’s annual utility permit is revoked, the utility provider shall obtain an individual utility permit for each Type A activity conducted within county rights-of-way until such time as the utility providers annual permit is reinstated.

B. Upon written notice by the Engineer, the Engineer may suspend issuance of permits to any utility provider at any time for failure of that utility provider to tender permit compensation within 120 days of billing or to provide security, pursuant to CCC 12.21.365 and 12.21.080, respectively. Such suspension shall continue until the account is brought current or until proper security is tendered by the utility provider.

C. Permits shall expire within 12 months of issuance unless otherwise extended by the Engineer. Construction must be in process for an extension to be granted. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.060 Franchise.

A. To the extent permitted by law, a franchise pursuant to Chapter 12.26 CCC shall be required for issuance of a utility permit to any utility provider who currently occupies or desires in the future to occupy rights-of-way and to provide utility services to any person or area in the county.

1. Franchises will not be required for issuance of a utility permit under this chapter for the construction and maintenance of utility facilities serving one single-family residence where such facilities will cross the rights-of-way perpendicular to the rights-of-way line, plus or minus 10 degrees. Persons who fall under this franchise exemption shall enter into an indemnification agreement before a utility permit will be issued.

2. Franchises will not be required for issuance of a utility permit under this chapter for any work on county rights-of-way that is performed by or on behalf of the county or by any entity under contract with the county to perform such work.

B. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter and Chapter 12.26 CCC, this section shall have no effect on the issuance of a utility permit under this chapter for any existing franchise or agreement until:

1. The expiration of such franchise or agreement; or

2. An amendment to an unexpired franchise/agreement, unless both parties agree to defer full compliance to a specific date not later than the present expiration date; or

3. Any transaction which results in transfer of ownership or working control of the franchisee. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.070 Reserved.

[Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.080 Financial security.

A. Before any construction work is started, financial security in the form of a bond, irrevocable letter of credit or irrevocable assignment of interest in a bank account in an amount determined by the Engineer may be required to insure completion of construction, including but not limited to the restoration of surfacing, slopes, slope treatment, topsoil, landscape treatment, drainage facilities and cleanup of the rights-of-way for a period ending not more than one year after date of completion. If a surety bond is used as financial security, it shall be written by a surety company authorized to do business in the state of Washington.

B. A blanket financial security may be maintained covering multiple permits in lieu of individual financial security at the Engineer’s discretion.

C. Financial security will not be required of the United States government or any of its agencies or of any municipal corporation or department of the state of Washington and its local subdivisions.

D. The financial security shall guarantee, to the satisfaction of the county:

1. Timely completion of construction;

2. Construction in compliance with applicable plans, permits, technical codes and standards;

3. Proper location of the utility facilities as specified by the county; and

4. Restoration of the rights-of-way and other property affected by the construction. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.090 Location.

A. Utility installations shall be located to minimize need for later adjustment to accommodate future roadway improvements and to permit access to servicing such installations with minimum interference to roadway traffic. The county will make available to permittees, upon request, a copy of its six-year transportation improvement program (or capital facilities and transportation plan where required), in order to minimize both utility customer and road user inconvenience should future road improvements (on existing or new alignment) require adjustment or relocating of the utility facilities. Utility installations shall also be located to minimize impacts to critical areas, as defined in CCC Title 19.

B. The utility company shall be responsible to consider a minimum clear zone distance in all new construction, reconstruction or relocation of all overhead facilities and their appurtenances and underground facilities. Clear zone shall be defined as the roadside area at the edge of the traveled lane that is available for safe use by errant vehicles. The available clear zone is the distance, measured in feet, normal to the roadway beginning at the edge of the traveled lane to the closest part of any fixed object or nontraversable obstacles as defined in the most current version of the WSDOT Design Manual and the AASHTO “A Policy on Geometric Design of Highways and Streets” (Green Book).

C. Survey control monuments including existing monuments disturbed, destroyed or removed during construction, shall be placed or replaced by a registered surveyor, at the expense of the permittee, in accordance with recognized good practice of land surveying, and in conformance with all applicable state law and state and local regulations. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.100 Design.

A. The permittee shall be responsible for the design of the utility facility being proposed. This responsibility shall include, in addition to the integrity of the proposed utility facility, provisions for public safety during the course of construction and consideration of traffic safety and accident potential for the life of the installation.

B. For work requiring application to the county, the county may review and approve the permittee’s plans with respect to:

1. Location;

2. The manner in which the utility facility is to be installed;

3. Measures to be taken to preserve safe and free flow of traffic, including a traffic control plan;

4. Structural integrity of the roadway, bridge or other structure;

5. Ease of future road maintenance; and

6. Appearance of the roadway.

C. Permittee shall notify the Engineer of known or planned expansion of the utility facilities within the rights-of-way, particularly those located underground or attached to bridges or other structures within the rights-of-way.

D. The county’s granting of a franchise or permit shall not imply or be construed to mean the county shall be responsible for the design, construction or operation of the facility or for public safety during the facility’s installation, operation or maintenance. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.110 Standards and codes.

All utility installations shall be designed in accordance with the standards, codes and regulations applicable to the type of utility. This shall also include any road standards which the county shall deem necessary to provide adequate protection to the road, its safe operation, appearance and maintenance. Permittee shall further comply with any applicable provision of CCC Titles 16, 18 and 19, building, land use and environment. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.120 Condition of facilities.

All utility facilities shall be kept in a state of good repair. If any utility facility is not in such condition, the permittee shall undertake such work necessary to return the utility facility to a state of good repair. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.130 Interference with rights-of-way.

No utility facility may be located or maintained so as to unreasonably interfere with the use of the rights-of-way by the county, by the general public or other persons authorized to use or be present in or upon the rights-of-way. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.140 Relocation or removal of utility facilities.

A. Within 90 days following written notice from the county, a permittee shall, at its own expense, temporarily or permanently remove, relocate, change or alter the position of any utility facilities within the rights-of-way whenever the Engineer shall have determined that such removal, relocation, change or alteration is reasonably necessary for:

1. The construction, repair, maintenance or installation of any county, state, federal and/or city funded project;

2. The operations of the county or other governmental entity in or upon the rights-of-way.

B. The Engineer may extend the 90-day time period for good cause. All work must be accomplished by the same permitting process as for new installations.

C. The county may also remove or relocate any utility facilities located within the rights-of-way that the county determines to be necessary, appropriate or useful in response to any public health or safety emergency. All such removal or relocation shall be at the sole expense of the permittee.

D. Notwithstanding reinforcement or protection otherwise provided, a permittee shall be responsible for the security of each existing pipeline and utility facility within a road construction zone. Where there are unusual utility hazards or where heavy construction equipment will be used, the permittee shall provide adequate temporary protection. In replacing the roadway, the design should give due consideration to the protection of previously existing utility facilities in the roadway section without sacrificing the geometrics of roadway design.

E. If a permittee is required to relocate or remove its utility facilities from the rights-of-way and fails to do so within the designated time set out by the Engineer, the county may cause such to occur and charge the permittee for the costs incurred. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.150 Coordination of construction activities.

All permittees are required to cooperate with the county and with each other as follows:

A. By January 1st of each year, each permittee shall provide the Engineer with a schedule of its known proposed construction activities which may affect the rights-of-way for that year.

B. Each permittee shall meet with the county, other utility owners and users of the rights-of-way annually or as determined by the county to schedule and coordinate construction.

C. All construction locations, activities and schedules shall be coordinated, as ordered by the Engineer, to minimize public inconvenience, disruption or damages.

D. To ensure coordination of construction activities, the Engineer may require the permittee to field verify the location of their utility facilities within the county rights-of-way for both depth and alignment within two weeks of notice by the Engineer. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.160 Engineer’s certification.

Unless otherwise provided in a license, franchise, or cable franchise, the Engineer may require utility permit applications, plans, reports, basin maps and calculations to be accompanied by a written certification, sealed and dated, by a registered professional engineer in the state of Washington that the drawings, plans and specifications submitted with the application comply with applicable technical codes, rules and regulations. If required, the written certification shall read:

The design improvements shown in this set of plans, reports, basin map, and calculations conform to the most current editions of the Cowlitz County road standards, stormwater management ordinances, utility installations within road rights-of-way ordinance, telecommunications ordinances, and cable ordinances. All design variances have been approved by the Cowlitz County Engineer. I approve these plans for construction.

[Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.170 Construction schedule and notice of work.

Unless otherwise provided in a license, franchise or cable franchise, no permittee, or any person acting on the permittee’s behalf, shall commence any relocation or removal work or any other nonemergency work involving undergrounding, excavation or obstructing in or about the rights-of-way, except service repairs and individual service connections, without seven working days’ advance notice to the Engineer. The permittee shall also provide abutting private property owners or occupants seven working days’ advance notice of the specific location of work, the time work is scheduled to commence, and contact name and telephone number of permittee. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.180 Compliance with utility permit.

All construction practices and activities shall be in accordance with the utility permit and approved final plans and specifications for the utility facilities. The Engineer shall be provided access to the work and such further information as he or she may require to ensure compliance with such requirements. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.190 Display of utility permit.

The permittee shall maintain a copy of the utility permit and approved plans at the construction site, which shall be displayed and made available for inspection by the Engineer at all times when construction work is occurring. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.200 Noncomplying work.

Upon order of the Engineer, all work which does not comply with the utility permit, the approved plans or specifications for the work or the requirements of this chapter shall be removed or relocated at the expense of the permittee. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.210 Completion of construction.

The permittee shall promptly complete all construction activities so as to minimize disruption of the rights-of-way and other public and private property. All construction work authorized by a utility permit within rights-of-way, including restoration, must be completed within 90 days of the date of issuance or at such other interval as the county may specify in writing upon issuance of the permit. The Engineer may extend the 90-day time period for good cause. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.220 As-built drawings.

If an engineer’s certification is required under CCC 12.21.160, then in addition to the requirements of CCC 12.21.320, within 30 days after completion of construction, the permittee shall furnish the Engineer with two complete sets of plans, drawn to scale and certified to the county as accurately depicting the location of all utility facilities constructed pursuant to the utility permit, except individual service connections and service repairs. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.230 Underground facilities.

A. Location and Alignment.

1. For all crossings, the angle of crossing should be as near a right angle to the road centerline as practicable. However, lesser angles may be permitted based upon economic considerations of practical alternatives.

2. Where practicable, crossings should avoid cuts, footings of bridges and retaining walls, or locations where roadway drainage would be affected.

3. Longitudinal installations should run parallel to the roadway and lie as near as practicable to the rights-of-way line. Installations which cannot be so installed will be allowed within the rights-of-way; provided, that the installation will not adversely affect the design, construction, stability, structural integrity, traffic safety or operation of the road facility.

4. Where irregularly shaped portions of the rights-of-way extend beyond the normal rights-of-way limits, a uniform alignment of utility facilities shall be allowed.

5. Where existing utility facilities are in place, new utility facilities shall be compatible with the existing installations and conform to this chapter as nearly as practicable.

6. Except upon an adequate showing of another route as economically prohibitive, any water or sewer line other than a main line shall not be allowed parallel to a county road within the county rights-of-way.

B. Cover. The grade of and resulting cover for an underground utility shall be a minimum of 36 vertical inches below the finished surface or the bottom of the ditch for all installations within county rights-of-way, or in compliance with applicable federal, state and industry requirements if greater; provided, however, where less than the minimum cover is made necessary to avoid obstacles, the utility facilities shall either be rerouted or protected with a casing, concrete slab or other method acceptable to the county.

C. Encasement.

1. Casings shall be installed for roadway crossings where required by appropriate industry code.

2. Casings may be required for the following conditions:

a. As an expediency in the insertion, removal, replacement or maintenance of a carrier line crossing or other locations where it is necessary in order to avoid open trench construction;

b. As protection for carrier lines from external loads or shock either during or after construction of a road;

c. For jacked or bored installations of coated carrier lines unless assurance is provided to the county that there will be no damage to the protective coating.

3. Within the rights-of-way, where practicable, casing pipes shall extend beyond the toe of fill slopes, back of roadway ditch, or outside of curb.

4. Other than for necessary carriers, vents and/or drains, casing pipes shall be sealed at both ends.

5. Casing pipes shall be designed to support the load of the road and superimposed loads thereon and, as a minimum, shall equal the structural requirements for road drainage facilities. Casings shall be composed of materials of sufficient durability to withstand conditions to which they may normally be exposed.

6. Uncased Carriers.

a. The carrier pipe shall conform to the material and design requirements of the appropriate utility industry and governmental codes and specifications.

b. The carrier pipe shall be designed to support the load of the road, plus superimposed loads thereon, when the pipe is operated under all ranges of pressure from maximum internal to zero pressure.

D. Appurtenances.

1. Vents shall be required for casings, tunnels and galleries enclosing carriers of fuel where required by federal safety standards. Vent standpipes should be located and constructed so as neither to interfere with maintenance of the road nor to be concealed by vegetation. Preferably standpipes should stand by a fence or on the rights-of-way line.

2. Drains shall be required for casings, tunnels or galleries enclosing carriers of liquid, liquefied gas or heavy gas. Drains for carriers of hazardous materials shall be directed to natural or artificial holding areas to prevent the potential for surface or groundwater contamination. Drains for which only water or other nonhazardous liquids may discharge may be directed into the roadway ditch or natural watercourse at locations approved by the county. The drain outfall shall not be used as a wasteway for routine purging of the carrier unless specifically authorized by the county.

3. Location markers and emergency information should be used when required by applicable state and federal standards.

4. Manholes should be designed and located in a manner that will cause the least interference to other utilities or future road expansion. Where practicable, installations in the pavement or shoulders should be avoided.

E. Installation. Installations shall ensure safety of traffic and preservation of the roadway structure, and required construction shall, unless otherwise provided in the approved permit, be in accordance with the following controls:

1. Trenchless construction shall be required for pipelines crossing roads paved with asphalt concrete or cement concrete and for roads paved with bituminous surface treatment unless otherwise directed by the Engineer.

a. If sufficient rights-of-way exist, the length of trenchless construction shall extend a minimum of four feet from edge of pavement, except that a lesser standard may be permitted by the County Engineer when conditions warrant.

b. Overbreaks, unused holes or abandoned casings shall be backfilled as directed by the Engineer.

c. Water boring under roadways shall not be permitted.

d. Existing carriers and conduit installed under a roadway shall be physically located prior to pipeline installation.

2. Trenched Construction and Backfill.

a. Where the pavement must be removed, it shall first be cut in vertical (or undercut) continuous straight lines.

b. Trenches shall be cut to have vertical faces, where soil and depth conditions permit, with a maximum width of outside diameter of pipe plus two feet. Shoring shall comply with the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries Safety Code.

c. The pipe or carrier shall be installed and the trench backfilled in a manner assuring no deformation of the pipe likely to cause leakage and restoration of the structural integrity of the roadway structure. Specific trench backfill requirements regarding materials and methods shall be provided by the county.

d. All trenched utilities shall mark the installation of the system with marking tape or locating wire. When marking tape is placed, it shall be used at 12- to 18-inch depth. Where nonmetallic cable is used, a locator wire shall be used and must be at same depth as the utility.

e. When trenching is approved on paved roads, the pavement shall be restored as required by the county.

3. Plowing of communication and electrical lines on or adjacent to existing roads by means of a vibratory plow may be allowed by the county; provided, that the structural integrity of the roadway is not impaired. All plowed utilities shall mark the installation of the system with marking tape or locating wire. When marking tape is placed, it shall be used at 12- to 18-inch depth. Where nonmetallic cable is used, a locator wire shall be used and must be at same depth as the utility.

F. One Call System. Utility installations shall be located and identified in accordance with RCW Title 19 (Washington State One Call System), as enacted or in the future is amended from time to time. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.240 Overhead facilities – Power and communications.

A. Purpose. This section applies to all electric power utility providers and facilities, and to all telecommunication utility providers and facilities, either separately sited or co-located with another utility, and located on or above ground within county’s right-of-way. It specifies when a permit is required for work that is to be done within the county right-of-way. All electric utilities and all telecommunications facilities using county rights-of-way, singularly or under co-location agreements with an existing county franchisee for their facilities must have a valid franchise with the county, both to occupy and to perform work in the county road right-of-way. Permits are required under the conditions generally stated in this chapter and as specifically set forth below.

B. Definitions. For the purposes of this section, the following terms, phrases, and their derivations shall have the meanings as set forth in CCC 12.21.020, and also as set forth below, unless the context indicates otherwise. When consistent with the context, words used in the present tense include the future tense, words in the plural number include the singular number, and words in the singular include the plural number. The word “shall” is always mandatory and not merely directory.

“Maintaining public/worker safety and performing emergency work” means responding to situations that require immediate attention. It specifically includes work necessary in order to maintain public/worker safety and to maintain reliable electric or communications service. It also includes all work necessary to restore electric or communications service following an outage.

“Maintenance” means the work involved in the replacement and/or repair of facilities within county right-of-way. For purposes of this section, utilities facilities shall include, but are not limited to, poles, towers, transformers, conductors, transmission lines, antenna and associated equipment, and streetlights.

“New construction” means the work involved in the installation of a new pole or power line where no pole or power line currently exists within county right-of way, and installation of a new communications tower or a new antenna within county right-of-way.

“Upgrade” means all work to existing power transmission facilities or telecommunications facilities that do not meet the definition of maintenance. This specifically includes:

1. Additions or upgrades to existing facilities in order to upgrade service, expand service, increase capacity and/or to improve service reliability; and/or

2. Pole height changes that are required by law in order to provide legal clearances;

3. Installation of more poles, taller poles, larger conductors, additional conductors, transmitters, new towers or taller towers, transmission lines, antenna and associated equipment.

“Work to accommodate county projects” means all necessary work resulting directly from action initiated by the county. An example would be the moving/altering of a power line, pole and attachments, or tower to accommodate a road improvement project. If a utility provider cannot timely obtain the necessary permissions for upgrades intended to coincide with a given relocation time deadline, it must move its facilities without delays necessary for the upgrade.

C. Permit.

1. No permission from the County Engineer is required for work by a utility provider to accommodate county projects, for maintaining public/worker safety or for performing emergency work. Additionally, no permit is required for routine or preventive maintenance provided where all of the following are true:

a. No trenching, plowing or excavation within the roadway prism;

b. No breaking of any roadway surface of the county right-of-way;

c. No traffic control plan is required; and

d. No new construction or additional poles, towers, transmission lines, or antenna or other utility facility is placed within the county right-of-way.

2. Permission from the County Engineer is required prior to a utility provider performing work on poles, transmission lines, towers, antenna and other utility facility, and unless specifically excluded under subsection (C)(1) of this section, this requirement includes:

a. New construction or the expansion of an existing utility facility or a new utility provider, or maintenance and/or replacement of existing utility facilities within county right-of-way; and

b. Other associated maintenance or minor nonemergency work within the right-of-way, to be carried out in a manner consistent with the county’s utility installation and franchising codes, as including:

i. Utility facility and associated facility relocations and installations; and

ii. Road crossings, to be constructed/modified consistent with all applicable codes.

D. Standards.

1. Single-pole or monopole construction and joint-use or co-location of franchised utility providers on one pole or tower will be required under franchising terms and conditions whenever feasible.

2. The minimum vertical clearance for overhead power and telecommunication lines above the ground and the minimum lateral and vertical clearance from bridges shall be in compliance with the National Electrical Safety Code and Washington State Department of Labor and Industries Electrical Construction Code.

3. Where irregularly shaped portions of the rights-of-way extend beyond the normal rights-of-way limits, a uniform alignment of utility facilities may be required. [Ord. 20-006 § 1, 2-11-20.]

12.21.250 Fiber optic systems.

A. Depth. All fiber optic systems shall be installed at a depth of not less than 36 inches below the road surface or 36 inches below any county ditch line if installed within a drainage area.

B. Location Marking. All fiber optic cable installers shall mark the installation of the system with marking tape or locating wire. When marking tape is placed, it shall be used at 12- to 18-inch depth. Where nonmetallic fiber cable is used, a locator wire shall be used and must be at same depth as fiber optic cable. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.260 Vegetation management.

A. Utilities engaged in vegetation management on county rights-of-way shall initially submit an integrated vegetation management (IVM) plan to the county for approval. This plan shall emphasize physical, mechanical, cultural and biological control methods to promote stable plant communities. The IVM plan shall include:

1. Goals and objectives of the vegetation management program;

2. Operational guidelines and standards for vegetation management activities. These guidelines as a minimum shall include the decision making criteria, the application method, and the rates of application used when applying a herbicide;

3. A list of herbicides the utility intends to use;

4. Specific areas in the county where the proposed herbicides will be used.

B. The county may limit or restrict the types, amounts, application methods, location and timing of pesticide applications if it has been determined that the proposed application will have a detrimental effect on ground and/or surface water, other sensitive areas, and/or the public health. However, the limitations or restrictions will not be in conflict with state law governing utility rights-of-way maintenance.

C. The utilities IVM plan shall be consistent with the critical areas, shorelines and stormwater management ordinances and any future groundwater or wellhead protection ordinances. After the county approves the initial IVM plan, revisions shall be submitted and approved annually.

D. Utilities engaged in tree trimming along county rights-of-way shall submit the conditions under which they will be trimming (excluding topping) any significant tree, including the magnitude and nature of the trimming, by tree species. This information shall be submitted along with the IVM plan and will be reviewed and approved by the county concurrently.

E. The utility shall not spray in areas that property owners have designated no-spray zones along the county rights-of-way unless approved by the Engineer.

F. Any vegetation management that impedes the traveled way shall be required to submit a traffic control plan and obtain a Type A permit in accordance with CCC 12.21.340 and 12.21.040. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.270 Aesthetic and scenic considerations.

A. Significant trees shall not be impacted (e.g., tree removal, topping, locating aboveground and underground facilities within the drip line) without prior approval by the Engineer, except during emergency situations as described in CCC 12.21.310.

B. It is preferable to retain all other healthy trees that do not pose a danger or hazard to the extent possible. For those trees proposed to remain, sound pruning practices shall be used that take into consideration safety first, arboriculturally correct methods and natural appearance.

C. All other landscaping and grounds removed, damaged or disturbed as a result of the construction, installation, maintenance, operation, repair, relocation or replacement of utility facilities shall be replaced or restored to as near the original condition as reasonably possible. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.280 Installations on roadway bridges and structures.

Attachment of utility facilities to a roadway structure (including bridges) may be allowed as approved by the Engineer where such attachment conforms to sound engineering considerations for preserving the roadway structure and its safe operation, maintenance and appearance. The attachment shall be in accordance with the following:

A. Attachment of a utility facility shall not be considered unless the structure in question is of a design that is adequate to support the additional load and can accommodate the utility facility without compromise of roadway features, including reasonable ease of maintenance.

B. Manholes and other utility access panels should be avoided within the roadway portion of the structure.

C. Attachment on a structure of a pipeline carrying a hazardous transmittant, not including natural gas, shall be avoided.

D. The utility facility attachment shall not reduce the clearance of a structure where such clearance is critical. Attachment to the outside of a structure should be avoided where there are reasonable alternatives.

E. Utility facility mountings shall be of a type which shall not create noise resulting from vibration.

F. The hole created in a structure abutment shall be sleeved, shall be of the minimum size necessary to accommodate the utility facility, and shall be sealed to prevent any leakage of water or backfill material.

G. The utility facility back of the abutment shall curve or angle out to align outside the roadbed area in as short a distance as is operationally practicable.

H. Communication and electrical power line attachments shall be suitably insulated, grounded and preferably carried in protective conduit or pipe from point of exit from the ground to reentry. Carrier pipe and casing pipe shall be properly isolated from electric power line attachments. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.290 Damage to property.

No permittee or any person acting on a permittee’s behalf shall take any action or permit any action to be done which may impair or damage any rights-of-way, or other property located in, on or adjacent thereto except in accordance with CCC 12.21.320, Restoration of rights-of-way. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.300 Damage to permittee’s facilities.

To the extent permitted by Washington law, the county shall not be liable for any damage to or loss of any utility facility within the rights-of-way as a result of or in connection with any emergency removal or relocation, public works, public improvements, construction, excavation, grading, filling or work of any kind in the rights-of-way by or on behalf of the county or any entity under contract with the county except for damage caused by the negligence of the county. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.310 Repair and emergency work.

In the event of an unexpected repair or emergency (including but not limited to storm conditions or other conditions where public safety is of paramount consideration), a permittee may commence such repair and emergency response work as required under the circumstances; provided, the permittee shall notify the Engineer as promptly as possible, before such repair or emergency work or as soon thereafter as possible if advance notice is not practicable. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.320 Restoration of rights-of-way.

Restoration shall comply with the following:

A. When a permittee, or any person acting on its behalf, does any work in or affecting any rights-of-way, it shall, at its own expense, promptly remove any obstructions therefrom and restore such ways or property to the condition required by applicable county road standards. As used in this section, “promptly” means as required by the Engineer in the reasonable exercise of the Engineer’s discretion.

B. If weather or other conditions do not permit the complete restoration required hereunder, the permittee shall temporarily restore the affected ways or property. Such temporary restoration shall be at the permittee’s sole expense, and the permittee shall promptly undertake and complete the required permanent restoration when the weather or other conditions no longer prevent such permanent restoration.

C. A permittee or other person acting on its behalf shall use suitable barricades, flags, flagmen, lights, flares and other measures as required for the safety of all members of the general public and to prevent injury or damage to any person, vehicle or property by reason of such work in or affecting such rights-of-way.

D. All restoration work conducted under this section shall be subject to final inspection and approval by the Engineer. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.330 Restoration of improvements.

A. Upon completion of any construction work, the permittee shall promptly repair, but in no event longer than such time as may be established by the county during permit review, any and all public and private property, improvements, landscaping, fixtures, structures and facilities which are damaged during the course of construction, restoring the same to as near the original condition before construction commenced.

B. All roadway crossings shall be done by means of boring or pushing (trenchless installation). Opening of the roadway surface shall not be permitted unless it has been determined by the Engineer that boring or pushing cannot be done.

C. When a trenched crossing is approved, restoration shall be in accordance with one of the following guidelines:

1. Controlled density fill (CDF) shall be required as a backfill material; or

2. Select backfill, meeting the requirements of the standard specifications, may be used. Backfill shall be compacted to at least 95 percent density and placed in a maximum of six-inch lifts. If the capability can be demonstrated, based upon compaction equipment or quality of backfill to achieve 95 percent density in thicker lifts, then the depth of backfill lifts may be increased as demonstrated to a maximum of one foot.

3. Native material may be used as backfill material when standard acceptable tests allow, and when standard tests demonstrate the material meets the requirements set forth in the standard specifications. The requirements for compaction and placement in subsection (C)(2) of this section also apply when native material is used.

D. After backfill and compaction of accepted method (C)(1), (2), or (3) above, an immediate cold patch shall be placed and maintained in a manner acceptable to the Engineer. A permanent hot mix patch of 0.33 feet minimum thickness or the existing asphalt thickness, whichever is the greater, shall be placed and sealed within 30 days, unless an extension is granted by the Engineer.

E. All utility facilities placed parallel to and within the pavement structure shall be required to overlay the half-road with a minimum 0.17 feet of asphalt of asphalt concrete. Any exceptions to this overlay requirement will be on a case-by-case basis, subject to approval by the Engineer, and considering the existing conditions of the pavement. Cement concrete pavement shall be restored consistent with the standard specifications. Any cement concrete pavement affected by any construction work shall be repaired by replacement of the affected pavement panels.

F. When conditions are warranted, the Engineer may require all or a portion of the trench be backfilled with a combination of select backfill or CDF. Conditions that may warrant a combination use may be, but not limited to, the depth of trench required, the type of material that is being excavated and crossings on arterial and collector roadways.

G. When conditions are warranted, the Engineer may require financial security for a minimum of 10 years in the form of a bond, irrevocable letter of credit or irrevocable assignment of interest in a bank account for all or a portion of restoration. Conditions that may warrant this may be, but not limited to, the placement of utility facilities in or near sensitive areas and areas of continuous settlement. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.340 Traffic control.

A. Any construction proposed within the traveled way shall provide a traffic control plan. All traffic control and traffic control devices shall be as specified in the latest edition of the MUTCD. The permittee shall implement the approved plan, when necessary, until the project is given final acceptance by the county. If conditions change, the traffic control plan shall also reflect the changes.

B. During any construction, barriers and warning signs shall be erected, lighted and maintained as necessary or as directed by the county for the protection of the traveling public. The county may hire or use county forces to bring traffic control up to the safety standards set out in the MUTCD, Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) Design Manual and other applicable documents at the permittee’s expense when the safety of the traveling public is at risk.

C. Road Closures.

1. When road closures and detours cannot be avoided, the permittee shall notify the county at least seven days prior to the road closure. Road closures requiring action by the Board shall require a minimum of 21 days’ advance notice. The county requires a detour plan to be prepared, submitted and approved prior to closing any portion of a county roadway.

2. The road closure plan, at a minimum, shall include a detour route with the location and type of signs to be used, as per the MUTCD. A written statement describing the detour route, length of detour and proposed dates and times of road closure shall also be submitted.

3. All road closures shall be consistent with Chapter 12.20 CCC and Chapter 47.48 RCW. Special consideration needs to be given by the permittee concerning the timing requirements of road closures as specified in Chapter 12.20 CCC and Chapter 47.48 RCW, and the timing requirements for the Board to review and approve the closure. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.350 Eminent domain.

Nothing in this chapter shall be deemed or construed to impair or affect, in any way or to any extent, the county’s power of eminent domain. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.360 Indemnification.

Each permittee shall defend, indemnify and hold harmless the county, its elected and appointed officials, agents and employees from any and all claims, actions, suits, proceedings, arbitrations, judgments, liability, loss, expense or damages of every kind and description, including but not limited to court costs and reasonable attorneys’ fees, by reason of or in connection with the use by permittee of the county rights-of-way or action, error or omission of permittee, its employees, agents or subcontractors, whether by negligence or otherwise in connection with the use of such rights-of-way, except for those damages caused solely by the negligence or willful misconduct of the county, its elected and appointed officials, agents or employees acting within the scope of their employment; provided, that for only those provisions of this chapter which a court of competent jurisdiction determines are subject to RCW 4.24.115, then in the event of damages arising out of bodily injury to persons or damage to property caused by or resulting from the concurrent negligence of the county, its elected and appointed officials, agents, or employees, and the permittee or permittee’s agents or employees, permittee’s liability to hold harmless and indemnify the county is enforceable only to the extent of permittee’s negligence. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.365 Fees.

The Board of County Commissioners (Board) shall, from time to time by resolution, to be kept on file with both County Engineer and the Clerk of the Board, establish the fees and costs to be charged for the processing and review, and ongoing administration of any public or private annual utility permit or permission, or individual utility permit, as the reasonably associated and determined value for county services tendered and received by such franchisee or permittee. Fees and any associated costs shall be due and owing from the franchisee or permittee within 30 days of county invoicing, and failure to pay shall constitute gross noncompliance under CCC 12.21.050. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]

12.21.370 Violations – Penalties.

A. Any person, firm or corporation violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall be subject to the general penalties in CCC 1.01.090, and any franchised or permitted public or private utility violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed a public nuisance in accordance with Chapter 12.55 CCC. Each person, firm or corporation found guilty of a violation shall be deemed guilty of a separate offense for every day during any portion of which any violation of any provision of this chapter is committed, continued or permitted by such person, firm or corporation and shall be punishable therefor as provided for herein.

B. The violation of any provision of this chapter shall be subject to civil penalties under CCC 2.06.080 to 2.06.110, except that the cumulative penalty under CCC 2.06.130 shall be set by the Director at not less than $100.00 per day and not more than $1,000 per day, and except that “Director” shall mean the Public Works Director.

C. Notwithstanding the existence or use of any other remedy, the Director or Engineer may seek legal or equitable relief to enjoin any acts or practices and abate any conditions which constitute or will constitute a violation of this chapter or other regulations adopted by this chapter. [Ord. 17-037 § 2, 4-25-17.]