ORS 757.480¹
Approval needed prior to disposal, mortgage or encumbrance of certain operative utility property or consolidation with another public utility
  • exceptions

(1) A public utility doing business in Oregon shall not, without first obtaining the Public Utility Commission’s approval of such transaction:

(a) Except as provided in subsection (6) of this section, sell, lease, assign or otherwise dispose of the whole of the property of the public utility necessary or useful in the performance of the public utility’s duties to the public or any part thereof of a value of $1 million or more, or sell, lease, assign or otherwise dispose of any franchise, permit or right to maintain and operate the public utility or public utility property, or perform any service as a public utility;

(b) Mortgage or otherwise encumber the whole or any part of the property of the public utility necessary or useful in the performance of the public utility’s duties to the public, including any franchise, permit or right to maintain and operate the public utility or public utility property, or perform any service as a public utility; or

(c) By any means whatsoever, directly or indirectly, merge or consolidate any of the public utility’s lines, plant, system or other property whatsoever, or franchise or permit to maintain or operate any public utility property, or perform any service as a public utility, or any part thereof, with any other public utility.

(2) A public utility doing business in Oregon shall annually file with the commission a report that includes a summary of each transaction in excess of $25,000 but less than $1 million that the public utility made during the previous calendar year that involved the sale, lease, assignment or other disposition of the whole of the property of the public utility necessary or useful in the performance of the public utility’s duties to the public or any part thereof.

(3) Every sale, lease, assignment, mortgage, disposition, encumbrance, merger or consolidation subject to subsection (1) of this section made other than in accordance with the order of the commission authorizing the same is void.

(4) For purposes of complying with subsections (1)(a) and (2) of this section, a public utility shall include in the calculation of the value of the property to be sold, leased, assigned or otherwise disposed of only the portion of the value of the property that has been recognized as the basis of an operating expense or capital expenditure in an Oregon rate valuation or other hearing or proceeding.

(5) This section does not prohibit or invalidate the sale, lease or other disposition by any public utility of property that is not necessary or useful in the performance of the public utility’s duties to the public.

(6) A water utility doing business in Oregon shall not, without first obtaining the Public Utility Commission’s approval of a transaction, sell, lease, assign or otherwise dispose of the whole of the property of the water utility necessary or useful in the performance of the water utility’s duties to the public or any part thereof of a value in excess of $10,000, or sell, lease, assign or otherwise dispose of any franchise, permit or right to maintain and operate the water utility or water utility property, or perform any service as a water utility. [Formerly 757.155; 1999 c.530 §1; 2019 c.252 §1]

Chapter 757

Notes of Decisions

Under regulatory scheme, Public Utility Commissioner has authority to promulgate rule limiting telephone company’s liability for directory listing errors or omissions. Garrison v. Pacific NW Bell, 45 Or App 523, 608 P2d 1206 (1980)

Refund is proper exercise of Public Utility Commission’s general powers if refund (1) is based only on in­for­ma­­tion in existence at time of rate order for which refund is being made; (2) is not based on evalua­tion of public utility’s actual expenses or revenues; and (3) is not effectuated by offsetting future rates. Gearhart v. Public Utility Commission, 255 Or App 58, 299 P3d 533 (2013), aff’d 356 Or 216, 339 P3d 904 (2014)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Authority of Governor and Public Utility Commissioner to enter into binding agree­ments with respect to uniform curtail­ment plans, (1977) Vol 38, p 861

1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 757—Utility Regulation Generally, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors757.­html (2019) (last ac­cessed May 16, 2020).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2019, Chapter 757, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano757.­html (2019) (last ac­cessed May 16, 2020).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent. Currency Information