Chapter 4906-6 Accelerated Certificate Applications

4906-6-01 Purpose and scope.

(A) This chapter sets forth the requirements for the filing of an accelerated certificate application.

(B) The board may, upon an application or motion filed by a party, waive any requirement of this chapter other than a requirement mandated by statute.

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06

4906-6-02 Types of accelerated applications.

(A) An accelerated certificate application shall be submitted as either a letter of notification application or a construction notice application, as outlined in the appendix to rule 4906-1-01 of the Administrative Code.

(B) If a project meets the requirements of both a letter of notification application and construction notice application, a letter of notification application shall be filed.

(C) If a project that qualifies for accelerated review is an associated facility of another project or projects subject to accelerated review before the board, the projects may be combined into one accelerated certificate application. These applications should be in the same form, meaning that if any of the associated projects require a letter of notification application, the combined application shall follow the requirements for letter of notification applications outlined in this chapter.

Replaces: part of 4906-5-02

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06
Prior Effective Dates: 12/27/76, 6/10/89, 8/28/98, 12/15/03, 1/25/09

4906-6-03 Filing of an accelerated application.

(A) At least five days prior to submitting an accelerated certificate application, the applicant shall request a case number and file a preapplication notification letter with the board. The preapplication notification letter shall include a general description of the project, an anticipated project schedule, and any requests for expedited processing. If an applicant fails to file a preapplication notification letter, and instead files its request for expedited processing along with its application, the expedited processing of its application will not begin until five days after its application is filed.

(B) A letter of notification application shall be filed not less than ninety days before the planned commencement of construction. A letter of notification for which the applicant requests expedited processing shall be filed not less than twenty-eight days before planned commencement of construction. For good cause shown, the applicant may request a shorter automatic approval date than the ninety or twenty-eight day requirement.

(C) A construction notice shall be filed not less than ninety days before planned commencement of construction. A construction notice for which the applicant requests expedited processing shall be filed not less than twenty-one days before planned commencement of construction. For good cause shown, the applicant may request a shorter automatic approval date than the ninety or twenty-one day requirement.

Replaces: part of 4906-5-02

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06
Prior Effective Dates: 12/27/76, 6/10/89, 8/28/98, 12/15/03, 1/25/09

4906-6-04 Requests for expedited treatment and fees.

(A) If an applicant requests expedited processing of an accelerated certificate application, in addition to filing the preapplication notification letter, and application with the docketing division, the applicant shall:

(1) Serve a copy of the application on the board's executive director or the executive director's designee at or before the filing of the expedited application by hand delivery or overnight courier service.

(2) Pay a fee of two thousand dollars due at the time of the filing. This payment is in addition to the payment due pursuant to paragraph (C) of this rule.

(B) Unless otherwise notified by the board, its executive director, or the administrative law judge, a request for expedited processing is considered to be accepted. The request for expedited processing may be rejected at any time prior to the expedited process automatic approval date. If a request for expedited processing is rejected, the two thousand dollar up front payment will be retained and credited against an applicant's final invoice to be issued pursuant to paragraph (D) of this rule.

(C) Board expenses for the processing of accelerated certificate applications, resolution of jurisdictional issues, and all other incidental services will be invoiced at cost. Payment shall be due upon receipt of an invoice.

Replaces: part of 4906-5-02

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06
Prior Effective Dates: 12/27/76, 6/10/89, 8/28/98, 12/15/03, 1/25/09

4906-6-05 Accelerated application requirements.

(A) Accelerated certificate applications shall comply with the form and content requirements outlined in Chapter 4906-2 of the Administrative Code.

(B) Letter of notification and construction notice applications shall contain all data and information necessary to meet the requirements of this rule.

(1) The applicant shall provide the name of the project and applicant's reference number, names and reference number(s) of resulting circuits, a brief description of the project, and why the project meets the requirements for a letter of notification or construction notice application.

(2) If the proposed project is an electric power transmission line or gas pipeline, the applicant shall provide a statement explaining the need for the proposed facility.

(3) The applicant shall provide the location of the project in relation to existing or proposed lines and substations shown on an area system map of sufficient scale and size to show existing and proposed transmission facilities in the project area.

(4) The applicant shall describe the alternatives considered and reasons why the proposed location or route is best suited for the proposed facility. The discussion shall include, but not be limited to, impacts associated with socioeconomic, ecological, construction, or engineering aspects of the project.

(5) The applicant shall describe its public information program to inform affected property owners and tenants of the nature of the project and the proposed timeframe for project construction and restoration activities.

(6) The applicant shall provide an anticipated construction schedule and proposed in-service date of the project.

(7) The applicant shall provide a map of at least 1:24,000 scale clearly depicting the facility with clearly marked streets, roads, and highways, and an aerial image.

(8) The applicant shall provide a list of properties for which the applicant has obtained easements, options, and/or land use agreements necessary to construct and operate the facility and a list of the additional properties for which such agreements have not been obtained.

(9) The applicant shall describe the following information regarding the technical features of the project:

(a) Operating characteristics, estimated number and types of structures required, and right-of-way and/or land requirements.

(b) For electric power transmission lines that are within one hundred feet of an occupied residence or institution, the production of electric and magnetic fields during the operation of the proposed electric power transmission line. The discussion shall include:

(i) Calculated electric and magnetic field strength levels at one meter above ground under the lowest conductors and at the edge of the right-of-way for:

(a) Normal maximum loading.

(b) Emergency line loading.

(c) Winter normal conductor rating.

(ii) A discussion of the applicant's consideration of design alternatives with respect to electric and magnetic fields and their strength levels, including alternate conductor configuration and phasing, tower height, corridor location, and right-of-way width.

(c) The estimated capital cost of the project.

(10) The applicant shall describe the social and ecological impacts of the project.

(a) Provide a brief, general description of land use within the vicinity of the proposed project, including a list of municipalities, townships, and counties affected.

(b) Provide the acreage and a general description of all agricultural land, and separately all agricultural district land, existing at least sixty days prior to submission of the application within the potential disturbance area of the project.

(c) Provide a description of the applicant's investigation concerning the presence or absence of significant archeological or cultural resources that may be located within the potential disturbance area of the project, a statement of the findings of the investigation, and a copy of any document produced as a result of the investigation.

(d) Provide a list of the local, state, and federal governmental agencies known to have requirements that must be met in connection with the construction of the project, and a list of documents that have been or are being filed with those agencies in connection with siting and constructing the project.

(e) Provide a description of the applicant's investigation concerning the presence or absence of federal and state designated species (including endangered species, threatened species, rare species, species proposed for listing, species under review for listing, and species of special interest) that may be located within the potential disturbance area of the project, a statement of the findings of the investigation, and a copy of any document produced as a result of the investigation.

(f) Provide a description of the applicant's investigation concerning the presence or absence of areas of ecological concern (including national and state forests and parks, floodplains, wetlands, designated or proposed wilderness areas, national and state wild and scenic rivers, wildlife areas, wildlife refuges, wildlife management areas, and wildlife sanctuaries) that may be located within the potential disturbance area of the project, a statement of the findings of the investigation, and a copy of any document produced as a result of the investigation.

(g) Provide any known additional information that will describe any unusual conditions resulting in significant environmental, social, health, or safety impacts.

Replaces: part of 4906-11-01, part of 4906-11-02

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06, 4906.10
Prior Effective Dates: 10/10/78, 5/7/79, 3/20/87, 6/5/93, 8/28/98, 12/15/03, 6/17/05, 1/25/09, 5/7/09

4906-6-06 Completeness of accelerated certificate applications, staff investigation, and staff report.

(A) The board, its executive director, or the administrative law judge shall notify the applicant of any deficiencies in an accelerated application. Absent such notification, the application is considered to be complete and filed on the date on which it was submitted to the board. If the application is found to be deficient, the application is not deemed to be filed until the board, its executive director, or the administrative law judge determines that all deficiencies have been corrected.

(B) Staff shall conduct an investigation of each accelerated certificate application and submit a written report no less than seven calendar days prior to the automatic approval date.

(1) The report shall set forth the nature of the investigation and shall contain recommended findings with regard to section 4906.10 of the Revised Code.

(2) The report shall become part of the record and shall be provided to board members, the administrative law judge assigned to the case, the applicant, and all persons who have become parties to the proceedings. Copies shall be made available to any person upon request.

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06

4906-6-07 Service and public distribution of accelerated certificate applications.

(A) Upon filing of accelerated applications, the applicant shall:

(1) Serve a copy of the application, either electronically or by disk, on the chief executive officer of each municipal corporation, county, township, and the head of each public agency charged with the duty of protecting the environment or of planning land use in the area in which any portion of such facility is to be located. Hard copies shall be made available upon request.

(2) Place a copy of the application or place a notice of the availability of such application in the main public library of each political subdivision as referenced in division (B) of section 4906.06 of the Revised Code. If a notice is provided, that notice shall state that an electronic or paper copy of the application is available from the applicant (with instructions as to how to obtain an electronic or paper copy), available for inspection at the applicant's main office, available for inspection at the board's main office, and available at any other sites at which the applicant will maintain a copy of the application.

(3) Maintain on its website information as to how to request an electronic or paper copy of the application. Upon request for a paper copy of the application, the applicant shall supply the copy within five business days and at no more than cost.

(B) Proof of compliance with this rule shall be filed with the board within seven days of filing the accelerated application.

Replaces: part of 4906-11-01, part of 4906-11-02

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06
Prior Effective Dates: 10/10/78, 5/7/09, 3/20/87, 6/5/93, 8/28/98, 12/15/03, 6/17/05, 1/25/09, 5/7/09

4906-6-08 Public notice for letter of notification applications.

(A) Within seven days of the filing of a letter of notification application, the applicant shall give public notice in newspapers of general circulation in the project area and shall supply the board with proof of such publication no later than thirty days from the date of publication. The applicant is permitted to correct any inadvertent failure of service or publication, provided substantial compliance with these requirements is met. The notice shall occupy not less than one-fourth of a each newspaper's standard page, with letters not less than ten-point type, and shall bear the heading "Notice of Proposed Major Utility Facility" in bold letters not less than one-fourth inch high or thirty-point type. The notice shall contain the following information:

(1) The name and a brief description of the proposed facility, including type and capacity.

(2) A map showing the location and general layout of the proposed facility.

(3) A list of officials served with copies of the application.

(4) A list of public libraries that were sent paper copies or notices of availability of the application, and other readily accessible locations (including the applicant's website and the website, mailing address, email address, and telephone number of the board) where copies of the application are available for public inspection.

(5) A statement, including the assigned docket number, that a letter of notification to construct, operate, and maintain said facility is now pending before the board.

(6) A statement explaining that interested persons may file motions to intervene and/or file comments within ten days of the date of publication, in accordance with rule 4906-2-12 of the Administrative Code.

(B) Within seven days of the filing of a letter of notification, the applicant shall send a letter describing the proposed facility to each property owner and affected tenant. The letter shall provide a description of the facility, a map showing the location and layout of the facility, a list of readily accessible locations where copies of the letter of notification are available for public inspection, and a statement, including the assigned docket number, that a letter of notification to construct, operate, and maintain said facility is now pending before the board. The letter shall also explain how to participate and comment in the board's proceedings. The letter shall be sent by first class mail. Proof of compliance with this requirement shall be provided to the board staff. The letter shall be sent to each property owner and affected tenant:

(1) Within the planned site or along the preferred or alternate route(s) of the proposed facility.

(2) Contiguous to the planned site or along the preferred or alternate route(s) of the proposed facility.

(3) Who may be approached by the applicant for any additional easement necessary for the construction, operation, or maintenance of the facility.

(4) If the property owner's address is not the same as the address affected by the proposed facility, then the applicant shall also send a letter to the affected property.

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06

4906-6-09 Suspension of accelerated certificate applications.

(A) Upon good cause, the board, its executive director, or the administrative law judge may suspend consideration of an accelerated certificate application for up to ninety days.

(B) If the board, its executive director, or the administrative law judge assigned by the board acts to suspend an accelerated certificate application, the board, its executive director, or the administrative law judge will docket its decision and notify the applicant of the reasons for such suspension and may direct the applicant to furnish any additional information as the board, its executive director, or the administrative law judge deems necessary to evaluate the accelerated certificate application.

(C) Once an accelerated certificate application has been suspended, the board will act to approve, modify, or deny the accelerated certificate application within ninety days from the date that the application was suspended. The board or administrative law judge may, at its discretion, set the matter for hearing.

Replaces: part of 4906-5-02

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06
Prior Effective Dates: 12/27/76, 6/10/89, 8/28/98, 12/15/03, 1/25/09

4906-6-10 Automatic approval of accelerated applications.

(A) Staff shall recommend an automatic approval date for an accelerated application in its written report of investigation to the board, unless staff is recommending suspension of the automatic approval date. The recommended automatic approval date shall be no sooner than seven calendar days after the filing of the written report of investigation and no later than ninety days after the filing date of the application.

(B) If the board does not act upon a letter of notification or construction notice and/or waiver request on or prior to the automatic approval date set forth in the staff report, the letter of notification or construction notice and/or waiver request shall be deemed automatically approved, subject to any conditions contained in the staff report, on the day after the date set forth in the staff report.

(C) Any conditions included in a staff report that are not objected to by an applicant prior to the automatic approval date established in paragraphs (A) and (B) of this rule, shall be deemed automatically adopted by the board, administrative law judge, or executive director as conditions on the certificate of environmental compatibility and public need. If an applicant files a written objection or proposes an alternative condition to any condition proposed in a staff report with the board at least three days prior to the automatic approval date, such condition shall only be effective if specifically recommended by the staff in an amended staff report and adopted by the board within the time permitted for consideration of the application provided in division (F) of section 4906.03 of the Revised Code. No condition proposed in the staff report that is timely objected to by an applicant shall become effective unless the board specifically adopts such condition.

Replaces: part of 4906-5-02

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06
Prior Effective Dates: 12/27/76, 6/10/89, 8/28/98, 12/15/03, 1/25/09

4906-6-11 Construction of approved projects and notification of construction.

(A) Applicants who file accelerated certificate applications with the board may begin construction of projects reported in the applications after the date that automatic approval occurs or upon the approval by the board.

(B) Applicants shall file a notice with the board at least seven days in advance of beginning construction of the involved project if construction will begin on a different date from that contained in the application.

(C) Prior to commencement of construction, the applicant shall inform affected property owners and tenants of the nature of the project, specific contact information of applicant personnel who are familiar with the project, the proposed schedule for project construction and restoration activities, and a complaint resolution process. Notification to affected property owners and tenants shall be given at least seven days prior to work on the affected property.

(D) Applicants shall file a notice with the board within seven days following completion of the involved project.

Replaces: part of 4906-5-02

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06
Prior Effective Dates: 12/27/76, 6/10/89, 8/28/98, 12/15/03, 1/25/09

4906-6-12 Amendments and expiration of certificates.

(A) Unless otherwise ordered by the board, its executive director, or the administrative law judge, the filing, notifications, informational requirements, and processing timelines for an accelerated application for an amendment to a certificate issued under a letter of notification or construction notice application shall be determined by referring to the appropriate appendix to rule 4906-1-01 of the Administrative Code. Such amendment application shall use the letter of notification or construction notice docketing code. In such application, the applicant shall reference the case docket in which the certificate was granted.

(B) If a continuous course of construction has not commenced within three years of the accelerated application approval date, the board's approval of the project shall automatically expire. After the expiration of the board's approval, the applicant must submit the project for approval under the board's rules that exist at that time to commence construction.

Replaces: part of 4906-5-10

Effective: 12/11/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/30/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4906.03
Rule Amplifies: 4906.03 , 4906.06
Prior Effective Dates: 12/27/76, 6/10/89, 8/28/98, 12/15/03, 1/25/09, 6/19/09