CHAPTER XV. UTILITIESCHAPTER XV. UTILITIES\ARTICLE 2. ELECTRICITY

(a)   Installation.

(1)   The cost of original installation of all wiring services of 200 ampere or less in areas where electricity is readily available shall be as determined by the governing body. Services that exceed 200 ampere, commercial and industrial services, services requiring primary line extensions, and services in undeveloped areas shall be reviewed for cost and design by city staff on a case by case basis. All extensions thereafter made and all repairs to the same shall be entirely at the cost of the owner of the premises.

(2)   Service point. The point of connection between the facilities of the utility supplying electricity and the customer's facilities and/or premises wiring. The customers wiring and service equipment shall be arranged so that electric service can be delivered to their property at one point and measured by standard type metering equipment. The location of the customer' service point shall be mutually agreed upon by the customer and the city. It is the responsibility of the property owner to provide and maintain adequate clearances of all trees, buildings, and other impediments to allow safe and unobstructed electric service on to their property. Installations shall be in accordance with the National Electric Code and the National Electric Safety Code.

(3)   Residential Service. The service to residential customers, urban and rural, is single phase, 120/240 volts. Three phase service is not available for single family residential service. Multi-family housing projects may be served three phase, 120/208 volts.

(4)   Overhead Residential. The city shall install a service cable that will run from the utility pole directly to a service mast (Riser), or attachment on the structure, within close proximity of the (riser) as applicable. (Riser = the service entrance conduit that extends up out of the meter enclosure to the weatherhead and contains the service entrance conductors). It shall be the responsibility of the property owner to provide a point of attachment for aerial electrical service. The service cable supplying 200 amp service or less shall not exceed 90 ft. in length. Services requiring longer span lengths will be reviewed for design and additional costs. The connections on the line side of the riser shall be the (service point) between utility and customer. Occasionally a customer may request a pole mounted meter. Meter installations of this type are discouraged and will be determined on a case by case basis but in some cases e.g., rural residential (farms) and mobile homes, this may be the best application. The customer shall furnish and install a pole and guying (if required) capable of supporting at least 800 pounds of tension from the overhead service. The pole shall not be smaller than 25' CL-5, pressure treated wood pole. The service point shall be on the line side of this pole mounted service riser.

(5)   Underground Residential. The underground service connection from the city utility to the customer’s dwelling may consist of: (a) an underground service cable from a city utility pole (if mutually agreed upon) to the house. For this type of service request the city will determine if underground or aerial is the appropriate method of service. The city may bill the customer for the additional cost of underground service that is above the cost of a comparable overhead service. (b) An underground service cable from the city utility's underground distribution system to the house. Or (c) an underground service cable from the city utility's distribution system to a city approved pedestal. The city shall install a service cable in the property owners' conduit that will run from the city's utility distribution system directly to the meter enclosure. The connections on the line side of the meter enclosure shall be the (service point) between utility and customer. It is the responsibility of the property owner to hire an electrical contractor licensed in the city of Sterling to provide and install the meter enclosure, conduit, risers, misc. fittings and weatherhead as needed to meet the city requirements. Service lateral conduit for 200 amp residential service shall be 3” in diameter gray PVC schedule 40, with GRC sweeps and 10' of GRC conduit exiting the ground at the distribution pole. Maximum underground service length is 130'. Services requiring more than 130' will be reviewed for design and additional costs.

(6)   Commercial/Industrial.    Commercial and industrial service not exceeding 200 amp single phase shall follow the same installation requirements as residential service. For larger commercial and industrial service requests see 15-201(a)(1).

(b)   Maintenance.

(1)   Electrical services and wiring shall at all reasonable times be subject to inspection by the city manager or duly authorized employees of the city, and they shall have free access at all reasonable times to all parts of every building in which electricity is delivered, to examine the wires and fixtures. Any repairs found to be necessary upon any such inspection shall be made promptly by the owner of the premises. The city reserves the right to discontinue service until such repairs be made.

(2)   The city shall maintain all electric services, both aerial and underground, per original installation, up to the service point. All service equipment beyond the service point is premises wiring and is the responsibility of the property owner.

(3)   The city shall have the right to trim, remove, eradicate, cut and clear away any trees, limbs, vines and brush on such right-of-way, on utility easements and on land adjacent to the city's facilities (whether or not such facilities are located within a right-of-way or a utility easement) used to serve its customers whenever in the city's reasonable discretion such actions are reasonably necessary for the city to be able to provide safe and reliable electric service to customers. Property owner must permit the city access to such right-of-way at all reasonable times. In addition to its right to trim, remove, eradicate, cut and clear away any trees, limbs, vines and brush, the city shall have the right of ingress to and egress from customers property for the purposes of surveying, erecting, constructing, maintaining, inspecting, rebuilding, replacing, and repairing the city's facilities used to serve its customers.

(4)   A property owner may not construct buildings or structures which, in the City Electric Utilities reasonable discretion, interfere with or endanger the construction, operation or maintenance of the city's facilities or the city's access to such facilities for any proper purpose.

(Ord. 2269; Code 2014)

(a)   Furnishing. All electricity furnished by the city to any consumer shall be measured by meters furnished by the city for that purpose.

(b)   Meter Sockets Furnishing: Locating.

(1)   The city shall furnish all meter sockets for electrical services of 100 ampere single phase or less. The city manager or his or her duly authorized agent may designate the location of all electric meters and meter sockets.

(2)   When the meter socket is required to be located on a building or other structure, it shall be the responsibility of the owner to have the meter socket affixed to the building or structure by an electrician licensed by the city.

(Ord. 2269; Code 2014)

(a)   The electrical service consumer shall be responsible for the care of all meters installed for his or her use and for any accident or willful damage thereto. In the event of any such damage to the meter, the consumer shall promptly notify the city manager and it shall be his or her duty to have the necessary repairs made and charge the cost of the repairs to the consumer.

(b)   No meter under any circumstances shall be removed or repaired except by duly authorized employees of the city under the direction of the city manager.

(Code 1972, 22-32; Code 2014)

The city shall put a seal on all meters, and if such seals are broken or removed, the city manager may cut off the electrical service and such service shall not be resumed until the consumer shall pay to the city, the sum of $50, in addition to any penalty levied on conviction. In the event of a second offense by reason of breaking or removing any such meter, the city manager shall cause the service to be disconnected, and he or she shall refuse to continue electrical service to such premises so long as the consumer upon the premises, at the time of the breaking of the seal or removal of the same, shall continue to be the occupant thereof.

(Code 1972, 22-33; Code 2014)

The amount of electrical service recorded by any such meter shall be conclusive evidence on both the city and the consumer as to the quantity of services furnished, except when the meter shall have been found it to be defective or ceased to register. In such case, the amount of the current shall be determined by the average K.W.H. consumer for the prior six months period.

(Code 1972, 22-34; Code 2014)

(a)   The city manager shall have all meters carefully tested before the same is installed and it shall be his or her duty to have all meters in use tested or replaced periodically, if possible. If any meter is found to show an over registration of more than two percent, it shall be repaired or replaced at once at the direction of the city manager. Any meter not having been used for 60 days shall be tested before current is supplied through it.

(b)   If at any time the consumer becomes dissatisfied with the accuracy of the utility meter on his or her service line, he or she may make application to the City Clerk to have the meter tested. The application shall be accompanied by a fee of $5O.OO, and upon the receipt of such application and fee, the City Clerk shall instruct the Electric Distribution Superintendent to test the meter. If the meter test shows the meter has been over-registering more than two percent, the previous bill based on the reading of such meter shall be corrected accordingly and the fee previously paid shall be returned. If the test shows that the meter is not over-registering or under-registering more than two percent, the meter shall be considered correct and the City shall retain the test fee of $50.00. If the test shows that the meter has been under-registering more than two percent, the previous bill based on the reading of such meter shall be corrected accordingly. The City reserves the right to remove or test any meter at any time, and if such meter is found to be inaccurate, to substitute another meter in its place.

(Ord. 2348; Code 1972, 22-35; Code 2014)

The city reserves the right at any time without notice to shut off the current for the purpose of making repairs or extensions or for other purposes. No claims will be allowed by the city by reason of the current being cut off or discontinued. The city does not guarantee uninterrupted service.

(Code 1972, 22-36; Code 2014)

The following rates are established for all consumers purchasing electrical energy from the municipal electrical plant and system of distribution of the city as set out in the several classes of service:

(a)   City-Residential Rate.

(1)   0-150 kWh - $.088/kWh

(2)   151 kWh and above - $.0982/kWh

(3)   Available within the city limits for all electric service supplied to one customer through one metering point and to be used exclusively for domestic purposes. Service is for exclusive use of customer and is not to be resold or shared with others. Where two or more dwelling units such as duplexes, apartments, and trailer homes, each having separate kitchen facilities, are served through one meter, then this schedule may be applied by multiplying the KWH blocks by the number of dwelling units served, or at the option of the city the commercial rate will be applied. Where more than four rooms in a residence are rented, or are available for rent, such residences shall be considered as commercial rooming houses and billed on commercial rate. Residential rate is not available to residential premises used for commercial purposes; however, if the customer's wiring is so arranged that electric service for domestic and non-domestic purposes can be metered separately, then this scheduled rate will apply to that portion used for domestic purposes. Service will be alternating current, single phase, approximately 60 cycles, and at voltage the city has available for service required.

(b)   Rural-Residential Rate (Service Outside City Limits)

(1)   0-150 kWh - $.123/kWh

(2)   151 kWh and above - $.0982/kWh

(3)   Available outside the city limits for all electric service supplied to one customer through one metering point and to be used exclusively for domestic purposes. Service is for exclusive use of customer and is not to be resold or shared with others. Where two or more dwelling units such as duplexes, apartments, and trailer homes, each having separate kitchen facilities, are served through one meter, then this schedule may be applied by multiplying the KWH blocks by the number of dwelling units served, or at the option of the city the commercial rate will be applied. Where more than four rooms in a residence are rented, or are available for rent, such residences shall be considered as commercial rooming houses and billed on commercial rate. Residential rate is not available to residential premises used for commercial purposes; however, if the wiring is so arranged that electric service for domestic and non-domestic purposes can be metered separately, then this scheduled rate will apply to that portion used for domestic purposes. Service will be alternating current, single phase, approximately 60 cycles, and at voltage the city has available for service required.

(c)   Commercial Rate

(1)   0-150 kWh - $.123/kWh

(2)   151 kWh and above - $.0816/kWh

(3)   Available to commercial businesses conducting a gainful enterprise, whether inside or outside the city limits. Service is for exclusive use of customer and is not to be resold or shared with others. Service shall be alternating current single phase, approximately 60 cycles, and at voltage the city has available for service required. In the event the customer orders a disconnection and re-connection of service at the same location within a period of 12 months, then the city may make a charge of $15 per each connection.

(Ord. 2262; Ord. 2393; Ord. 2433; Code 2014)

The above rate is based on a total fuel cost of $.035 per NKWH generated and purchased. Whenever the average cost of fuel per NKWH generated and purchased shall differ from the base cost of $.035 per NKWH, the above rate will be increased or decreased by the amount of the actual cost of fuel per NKWH is above or below the base cost. This adjustment shall be made each month, and shall be computed on the cost of fuel and the NKWH generated and purchased during the monthly period immediately preceding the period for which the energy is furnished. The difference in fuel cost per NKWH and the base cost for NKWH shall be multiplied by 1.07 to account for distribution losses and energy furnished free by the municipal electric utility to the city. Fuel costs shall be determined from the cost of natural gas, diesel oil, lubricating oil, and energy purchased. Application of the fuel cost adjustment shall be at the option of the city. Amounts added to or deducted from bills under the above adjustment shall not be reduced by any other adjustment or disconnect, nor shall such amounts reduce the minimum bill.

(Ord. 2262; Ord. 2393; Ord. 2433; Code 2014)

In addition to the rates as set forth in this article, there is hereby established a monthly electrical service charge which shall be an additional charge to all customers of electrical energy from the municipal electrical plant on the following basis:

$6.00 per month service charge, residential rate - city;

$11.50 per month service charge, residential rate - rural;

$13.00 per month service charge, commercial rate.

(Ord. 2262; Ord. 2393; Code 2014)

There is hereby adopted and incorporated by reference herein, Interconnection Standards for Parallel Installation and Operation of Customer-Owned Residential and Commercial Renewable Energy Generation Facilities as well as Net Metering/Parallel Generation Rate Rider for Customer-Owned Renewable Energy Generation Facilities. No fewer than three copies of said Interconnection Standards Ordinance shall be marked or stamped “Official Copy as Adopted by Ordinance No. 2460,” and to which shall be attached a copy of this ordinance, and filed with the city clerk to be open to inspection and available to the public at all reasonable hours.

(Ord. 2394; Code 2014; Ord. 2460)

(a)   It is essential that the customer's equipment have satisfactory starting characteristics in order to avoid objectionable effects to the electrical service of surrounding customers. It is necessary to contact the City of Sterling's representative and obtain permission from the City when planning the installation of any motor indicated in this section. At a minimum, the City will require a soft start motor starter for any motors meeting the criteria below. For large HP motors (50HP or greater) the City may review with its engineer, and require that the customer install a variable frequency drive (VFD) type motor controller on such load.

(1)   Urban Areas:

Single Phase = 10 HP or more.

Three Phase = 30 HP or more.

(2)   Rural Areas:

Single Phase = 7.5 HP or more.

Three Phase = 10 HP or more.

(b)   Where equipment contains more than one motor and some motors are arranged for starting in sequence, the maximum total current should not exceed these values and the interval between steps should not be less than one second.

(c)   Motor Protection.

(1)   Three Phase motors shall have overload protection in all three phases as required by the National Electric Code. It is recommended that customer install complete protection against single phasing a three phase motor.

(2)   It is recommended that reverse phase protection be installed by customer where accidental reversal of motor rotation would cause serious inconvenience, damage or delay.

(Code 2014)

When electric supply to any primary, secondary, or service line has been disconnected and/or not used for a period of one year, the city may determine that it is in the best interest of the distribution system to terminate and/or remove such facilities.

(Code 2014)