RAPID/Roadmap/3 (2)

From Open Energy Information

< RAPID‎ | Roadmap

RAPIDRegulatory and Permitting Information Desktop Toolkit
My Projects

Bulk Transmission Land Access Overview (3)

Information current as of 2018
A bulk transmission developer may need a right-of-way, lease, or other use approval to access property necessary for project development. A developer may need to acquire access to or need to pass through, under, or over federal, state, local, tribal, or private land for bulk transmission development. Generally, to gain access to federal, state, local or tribal land, the developer will need to obtain a right-of-way, lease, or other use authorization. For access to private land, the developer may need to negotiate an easement with the private landowner. However, in certain circumstances eminent domain may be used if the private landowner and the developer fail to reach an agreement.


Land Access Overview Process

3.1 to 3.2 – Does the Project Require Access to Private Land?

If the bulk transmission project requires access to private land, the developer may need to purchase the land or obtain an easement from the landowner. The developer should conduct a due diligence review of the private land before signing the easement or purchasing the property. At minimum, the due diligence review should include a title opinion, an environmental assessment, a survey, an on-site evaluation, and a zoning opinion.

Private lands may also include right-of-ways held by railroad or telecommunication companies that may affect the development of the bulk transmission project. If the bulk transmission project will cross over, under, or anyway affect a railroad or telecommunication right-of-way, the developer will also need to negotiate a private lease agreement with the holder of the right-of-way for an easement to access the right-of-way.

Under certain circumstances, typically under the requirements of “public use,” the state may authorize a taking of private property with just compensation, commonly referred to as eminent domain. In addition, when the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issues a Construction Permit under Section 216 of the Federal Power Act (FPA), where the developer cannot negotiate an easement with the private landowner, the developer is granted the right of eminent domain under Section 216(e) of the FPA.

3.3 to 3.4 – Does the Project Require Access to Local Government Land?

If the project requires access to, under, or over municipal, county, or other local government land, the developer should contact the local government with jurisdiction over the land. The developer should consult with the local government to determine the approvals required and what the process is for obtaining such approvals. The local land approval process will vary from local government to local government.

3.5 to 3.6 – Does the Project Require Access to State Land?

A developer seeking access to, through, under, or over state land may need to obtain a lease, right-of-way, or other approval from the state agency with jurisdiction over the land. Each state has its own land right-of-way process. Some states have a centralized state land right-of-way process where a single state entity regulates state land access. Other states have a more decentralized state land access process where the state agency with jurisdiction over land has its own regulatory process for land access approvals. The developer should refer to the state’s regulations determine the necessary state land access approvals required for development.


Alabama

In Alabama, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Lease from the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to access state land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-AL-b

Alaska

In Alaska, a bulk transmission developer may need a lease, easement, or right-of-way from the Alaska Division of Mining Land and Water to access state lands. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way Overview:
3-AK-b

Arizona

In Arizona, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way from the Arizona State Land Department to access state land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-AZ-b

Arkansas

In Arkansas, approval for access to state land is incorporated through the Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity and/or the Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need regulatory process. A developer may need a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity from the Arkansas Public Service Commission (PSC) to construct or operate any new equipment or a facility supplying a public service. Ark. Code Ann. §23-3-201(a) (2017); Arkansas PSC Rules of Practice and Procedure, Rule 6.01. For more information see: Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity:
8-AR-c


A developer may also need a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need from the PSC before constructing a major utility facility. A major utility facility is defined, in part, as an electric generation plant and associated transportation facilities capable of operating at a capacity of fifty megawatts (50 MW) or more. Ark. Code Ann. §23-18-503(6) (1973). For more information, see:


Certificate Environmental Compatibility and Public Need:
8-AR-d

California

In California, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way Lease from the California State Lands Commission (Commission) if any portion of the project, such as roads, power lines, or pipelines, will cross over or occupy certain state land under the jurisdiction of the Commission. Cal. Pub. Res. Code § 6224.3. For more information, see: State Land Right-of-Way:
3-CA-b

Colorado

In Colorado, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way from the Colorado State Board of Land Commissioners if any portion of the project occupies certain state lands. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-CO-b

Connecticut

In Connecticut, a bulk transmission developer may need approval from the Connecticut Siting Council to access state land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-CT-b

Delaware

In Delaware, a developer may need approval from the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control or the state agency with jurisdiction to access state-owned lands for the purpose of developing a transmission project. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-DE-b

Florida

In Florida, a bulk transmission developer may need an Easement from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of State Lands to access state lands. A developer may also need a Utility Permit from the Florida Department of Transportation to build, modify, add, operate or relocate a new or existing utility on a state highway right-of-way.

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-FL-b

Georgia

In Georgia, a bulk transmission developer may need an easement from the Georgia State Properties Commission to access state land. For more information see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-GA-b

Hawaii

Currently, the RAPID Toolkit does not have state specific content regarding land access for bulk transmission development in Hawaii.

Idaho

In Idaho, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Easement from the Idaho Department of Lands to access state land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way Overview:
3-ID-b

Illinois

In Illinois, a bulk transmission developer may need a Public Utility Easement to access state land. Illinois – State Property Control Act (30 I.L.C.S. §§ 605 et seq.) For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-IL-b

Indiana

In Indiana, a bulk transmission developer may need State Land Easement from either the Indiana Department of Administration, Indiana Department of Natural Resources, or other appropriate agency in control of the land to construct transmission lines across state land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-IN-b

Iowa

In Iowa, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way Permit from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources in order to place transmission lines or other structures on state-owned land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-IA-b

Kansas

In Kansas, a bulk transmission developer may need a state land right-of-way or other approval from a state agency to access state land. 75 K.S.A. § 2131. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-KS-b

Kentucky

In Kentucky, a bulk transmission developer may need a state land lease or other approval from the Kentucky Finance and Administration Cabinet or other state agency to access state land. KY. Rev. Stat. Ann. §56.463(6) (1956). For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-KY-b

Louisiana

In Louisiana, a bulk transmission developer may need a state land right-of-way, lease, or other approval from the Louisiana State Land Office, the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources or the relevant agency with jurisdiction to access state lands. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way Overview:
3-LA-b

Maine

In Maine, a bulk transmission developer may need approval from the Maine Public Utilities Commission and the state agency with jurisdiction over the land to access state land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way Overview:
3-ME-b

Maryland

In Maryland, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way from the appropriate state agency with jurisdiction over the land, if the proposed project will be located in, on, or above state-owned real property. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-MD-b

Massachusetts

In Massachusetts, a bulk transmission developer may need a Permit for Construction and/or Associated Access to Park Lands & Roadways from the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation to access state land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-MA-b

Michigan

In Michigan, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Easement from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Finance and Operations Division – Real Estate Services Section to access state lands. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-MI-b

Minnesota

In Minnesota, a bulk transmission developer may a Utility Crossing License from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to construct a utility transmission project over, under, or across any state lands or public waters. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-MN-b

Mississippi

In Mississippi, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way Easement or Lease from the state agency with jurisdiction over the land, if the proposed project will be located in, on, or above state-owned real property. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-MS-b

Missouri

In Missouri, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Easement from the Missouri Board of Public Buildings for any project that may cross over, upon, or under state lands. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-MO-b

Montana

In Montana, a bulk transmission developer may need approval from the Montana State Land Board to gain access to state lands necessary for project development. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-MT-b

Nebraska

In Nebraska, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Easement from the Nebraska Vacant Building and Excess Land Committee and the applicable state agency to access state land. 72 N.R.S. § 818. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-NE-b

Nevada

In Nevada, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Lease or a State Land Right-of-Way from the Nevada Division of State Lands to access state lands. NRS 322.050.

State Land Right-of-Way Overview:
3-NV-b

New Hampshire

In New Hampshire, a bulk transmission developer may need approval from the appropriate state land management agency and the New Hampshire Council on Resources and Development; New Hampshire Long-Range Capital Planning and Utilization Committee; and the New Hampshire Governor and Executive Council to purchase or lease state land for the purposes of developing a bulk transmission project.. For more information, see: State Land Right-of-Way:
3-NH-b

New Jersey

In New Jersey, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Lease from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to access state lands to construct a transmission project. The developer may also need to obtain approval from the appropriate local government with jurisdiction over the land. For more information, see: State Land Right-of-Way:
3-NJ-b


New Mexico

In New Mexico, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way Easement from the New Mexico State Land Office for projects that need access to, on, or over state lands. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way Overview:
3-NM-b

New York

In New York, a bulk transmission developer may need a state land right-of-way easement or easements from the appropriate state agency if the proposed project will be located in, on, or above state owned real property. New York Public Lands Law §2. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way Overview:
3-NY-b

North Carolina

In North Carolina, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way from the North Carolina Department of Administration to access state lands. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-NC-b

North Dakota

In North Dakota, a bulk transmission developer, may need a State Land Right-of-Way Permit from the North Dakota Department of Trust Lands before constructing and operating transmission lines on state land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-ND-b

Ohio

In Ohio, a bulk transmission developer may need a state land right-of-way and/or lease from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources or the appropriate state agency with jurisdiction for projects that will be located in, on, or above state-owned real property. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way Overview:
3-OH-b

Oklahoma

In Oklahoma, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Easement from the Commissioners of the Land Office to access state land. OK. Const. art. VI-32; Oklahoma Commissioners of the Land Office — Easements Webpage. For more information see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-OK-b

Oregon

In Oregon, a bulk transmission developer may need a Easement Across State Land or Waterbody for projects that encroachment on state lands. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-OR-b

Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way from the state agency with jurisdiction over the land to access state lands. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-PA-b

Rhode Island

In Rhode Island, may need approval from the Rhode Island Energy Facility Board or the agency with jurisdiction over the land to access state lands for transmission development. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-RI-b

South Carolina

In South Carolina, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Easement from the South Carolina Department of Administration for projects that cross over, under, or through state-owned property, including marshlands and navigable water. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-SC-b

South Dakota

In South Dakota, a bulk transmission developer may need several permits and licenses in order to obtain access across state lands. For more information, see:

State Land Access Overview:
3-SD-b

Tennessee

In Tennessee, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way or Land Lease from the state agency with jurisdiction over the land if the proposed project requires access to state-owned property. Tenn. Code Ann. §12-2-112(a)(4). For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-TN-b

Texas

In Texas, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Lease or State Land Easement from the Texas General Land Office to access state owned land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-TX-b

Utah

In Utah, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Easement from the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands for a project on or over any state lands. For more information see:

State Land Easement:
3-UT-b

Vermont

In Vermont, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Right-of-Way from the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources before constructing utility lines within or near a state land right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-VT-b

Virginia

In Virginia, a bulk transmission developer may need approval from the state land management agency with jurisdiction over the proposed project site to access state lands necessary for the construction of a transmission facility. For more information, see: State Land Right-of-Way:
3-VA-b

Washington

In Washington, a bulk transmission developer may need a state land lease or state land right-of-way from the Washington State Department of Natural Resources to access state owned land for project development. For more information, see: State Land Right-of-Way Overview:
3-WA-b

West Virginia

In West Virginia, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way Easement from the West Virginia Public Land Corporation or other state agency with jurisdiction to access state owned land for project development. For more information, see; State Land Right-of-Way:
3-WV-b


Wisconsin

In Wisconsin, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Land Right-of-Way from the Wisconsin Public Lands Commission or the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to access state owned lands for project development. For more information, see: State Land Right-of-Way:
3-WI-b

Wyoming

In Wyoming, a bulk transmission may need a state Non-Roadway Easement from the Wyoming Board of Land Commissioners for projects over state land. For more information, see:

State Land Right-of-Way:
3-WY-b

3.7 to 3.8 — Will the Project Encroach on a State or Local Highway Right-of-Way?

A developer may need a lease, right-of-way, or other approval from the state or local agency with jurisdiction for projects that encroach upon a state or local highway. State and local governments require encroachment approval (e.g., lease, right-of-way, etc.) for any object placed in, over, or under a local or state highway right-of-way (i.e. towers, poles, pipelines, fences, and other structures), as well as when a private access road or driveways that join a public road.

Alabama

In Alabama, a bulk transmission developer may need an Occupancy and Use Permit Agreement from the Alabama Department of Transportation prior to adding to or upgrading existing facilities, installing new utilities on an existing right-of-way, and changing voltage of existing utilities within, over, or across a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-AL-c

Alaska

In Alaska, a bulk transmission developer may need a State of Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities Encroachment Permit from the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOT&PF) prior to constructing, maintaining, or changing an encroachment within a DOT&PF highway right-of-way, unless otherwise provided for by agency regulations. 17 AAC § 10.010; Alaska Stat. § 19.25.200(a). For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-AK-c

Arizona

In Arizona, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Encroachment Permit from the Arizona Department of Transportation for projects that encroach upon a state highway. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-AZ-c

Arkansas

In Arkansas, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Right-of-Way Permit from the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD) when a project encroaches within a state highway right-of-way. AHTD issues two types of State Highway Right-of-Way Permits (i.e., District Utility Permits and AHTD Utility Permits) that allow utilities to “install, relocate, maintain or remove” facilities on state highway property. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-AR-c

California

In California, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Encroachment Permit from the California Department of Transportation for all activities related to the placement of encroachments within, under or over California highway rights-of-way. Cal. Sts. & High. Code § 670(a)(2). For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-CA-c

Colorado

In Colorado, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Access Permit and/or a State Utility-Special Use Permit from the Colorado Department of Transportation for projects that encroach on a state highway right-of-way. CRS 43-1-110 et seq., Powers and Duties of the Department of Transportation; CRS 43-2-102, Department of Transportation Maintain Highway System; Colorado – C.R.S. 43-2-147, Access to Public Highways. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-CO-c

Connecticut

In Connecticut, a bulk transmission developer may need an Encroachment Permit from the Connecticut Department of Transportation prior to constructing transmission lines in a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-CT-c

Delaware

In Delaware, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Construction Permit from the Delaware Department of Transportation to construct, open, reconstruct, maintain, modify or use any crossing or entrance onto a state-maintained highway, street or road. Del. Code. Ann. tit. 17 § 146(b). For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-DE-c

Florida

In Florida, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Permit from the Florida Department of Transportation prior to building, modifying, adding to, operating, or relocating a new or existing utility on a right-of-way. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-FL-c


Georgia

In Georgia, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Encroachment Permit from the Georgia Department of Transportation for any project that encroaches on, uses or occupies any part of state highway right-of-way. Ga. Code Ann. §§ 32-6-1(a); Georgia Department of Transportation Utility Accommodation Policy and Standards, at 3-1. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-GA-c


Hawaii

In Hawaii, a bulk transmission developer may need a number of state highway right-of-way permits for any project activity that is adjacent to or within a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-HI-c

Idaho

In Idaho, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Encroachment Permit from the Idaho Transportation Department to add, modify, relocate, maintain, or remove an encroachment on the state highway or within the state highway rights-of way under IDAPA 39.03.42. For information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-ID-c

Illinois

In Illinois, a bulk transmission developer may need a Highway Utility Permit from the Illinois Department of Transportation to work within the right-of-way of an Interstate, U.S. State route, Illinois state route, or state maintained roadway. 606 I.C.S §9-113; Illinois Department of Transportation Website – Utility Permits. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-IL-c

Indiana

In Indiana, a bulk transmission developer may need a Highway Right-of-Way Permit from the Indiana Department of Transportation prior to constructing transmission lines in a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-IN-c

Iowa

In Iowa, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Permit from the Iowa Department of Transportation to place utility structures in a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-IA-c

Kansas

In Kansas, a bulk transmission developer may need a Use of Highway Right-of-Way or a Utility Permit Agreement from the Kansas Department of Transportation if the project will involve the installation, relocation, removal, or maintenance along, over or under any state highway right-of-way. K.S.A.§§ 68-404, 415; Kansas Department of Transportation - Utility Accommodation Policy. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-KS-c

Kentucky

In Kentucky, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Encroachment Permit from the Kentucky Department of Highways for projects that encroach on a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-KY-c

Louisiana

In Louisiana, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Right-of-Way Utility Permit from the Louisiana Department of Transportation & Development for projects that encroach on a state highway right-of-way. La. Admin. Code tit. 70.2.1; La. Stat. Ann. § 48:381. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Permit:
3-LA-c

Maine

In Maine, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Utility Location Permit and/or a State Highway Opening Permit from the Maine Department of Transportation prior to constructing transmission lines in a state highway right-of-way. If the project requires access to a municipal street or state-aid highway in a compact area of a compact urban municipality, then the developer may need to submit their permit applications to the appropriate municipal authorities. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-ME-c

Maryland

In Maryland, a bulk transmission may need a State Highway Administration Utility Permit from the Maryland State Highway Administration to construct transmission lines on, under, over, or near a state highway. MD. Code Ann., Transportation § 8-204 (1977). For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-MD-c

Massachusetts

In Massachusetts, a bulk transmission developer may need a Permit to Access State Highway from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation prior to constructing transmission lines near a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-MA-c

Michigan

In Michigan, the bulk transmission developer of a utility may need a Right-of-Way Construction Permit from the Michigan Department of Transportation Development Services Division in order to construct facilities or undertake operations, other than normal vehicular or pedestrian travel, on a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-MI-c

Minnesota

In Minnesota, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Accommodation Permit from the Minnesota Department of Transportation in order to construct utility lines in a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-MN-c

Mississippi

In Mississippi, a developer may need a state Highway Right-of-Way Encroachment Permit from the Mississippi Department of Transportation for projects that encroach on a state highway right-of-way. 37 Miss. Admin. Code, Pt. 1.7501, R. 04002.1100. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Permit:
3-MS-c

Missouri

In Missouri, a bulk transmission developer may need a Right-of-Way Construction Permit from the Missouri Department of Transportation if the project will involve the installation, relocation, or maintenance of a utility on the right-of-way of a state roadway, or if the project will affect the roadway, shoulders, or right-of-way. § 643.3.1. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-MO-c

Montana

In Montana, a bulk transmission developer may need a number of state highway encroachment permits from the Montana Department of Natural Resources & Conservation to access a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-MT-c

Nebraska

In Nebraska, a bulk transmission developer may need an Occupy Right-of-Way Permit from the Nebraska Department of Roads to encroach upon any portion of a state highway right-of-way with an underground or aboveground pipe, pole line, conduit or guy wire. 39 N.R.S. §§ 1359(1), 1361; 410 N.A.C §§ 001.02, 002.02; Department of Roads Permit Application Guidelines, at p.2. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-NE-c

Nevada

In Nevada, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Encroachment Permit from the Nevada Department of Transportation for any projects that encroach on any Nevada street, highway, or other right-of-way for one year or longer. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-NV-c

New Hampshire

In New Hampshire, a bulk transmission developer may need a Excavation Permit, Encroachment Permit, Pole License, and/or Use and Occupancy Agreement from the New Hampshire Department of Transportation prior to constructing transmission lines near a state highway or railroad right-of-way. Utility Accommodation Manual. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-NH-c

New Jersey

In New Jersey, a bulk transmission developer may need approval from the New Jersey Department of Transportation prior to constructing a transmission facility over, under, or within a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-NJ-c

New Mexico

In New Mexico, a bulk transmission developer may need a number of state highway encroachment permits from the New Mexico Department of Transportation to access a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-NM-c

New York

In New York, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Permit for Non-Utility Work and/or a State Highway Utility Work Permit for projects that encroach on, or require work within a State highway right-of-way. N.Y. Highway L. § 52. Additionally, a developer may need a Occupancy Permit and/or a Work Permit from the New York State Thruway Authority (Thruway Authority) in order to use, occupy, or conduct work on real property under the Thruway Authority’s jurisdiction. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-NY-c

North Carolina

In North Carolina, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Encroachment from the North Carolina Department of Transportation to construct a transmission line on, under, over, or near a state highway. N.C. Gen. Stat. Ann. §136-18 (1921), 19A N.C. Admin. Code 2b.0502(a) (1981). For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-NC-c

North Dakota

In North Dakota, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Occupancy Permit from the North Dakota Department of Transportation before before installing, replacing, or maintaining any utilities on a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-ND-c

Ohio

In Ohio, a bulk transmission developer may need one or more permits from the Ohio Department of Transportation in order to “use or occupy” a portion of a state road or highway right-of-way. O.R.C. § 5515.01. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-OH-c

Oklahoma

In Oklahoma, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Permit from the Oklahoma Department of Transportation for any project that uses a state highway right-of-way. Ok. Stat. Ann. §69-1401. For more information see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-OK-c

Oregon

In Oregon, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Encroachment Permit for any project activity that encroaches on a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-OR-c

Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, a bulk transmission developer may need a Highway Occupancy Permit from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation before performing any work along or within a state highway right-of-way involving the placing of utilities facilities or other structures. 67 PA. Code. §459.3(a)(1980). For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-PA-c

Rhode Island

In Rhode Island, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Permit and/or a Physical Alteration Permit from the Rhode Island Department of Transportation prior to constructing transmission lines near a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-RI-c

South Carolina

In South Carolina, a bulk transmission developer may need an Encroachment Permit and/or a Utility Agreement from the South Carolina Department of Transportation to the build, modify, add to, operate, or relocate a new or existing utility on a state road right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-SC-c

South Dakota

In South Dakota, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Permit from the South Dakota Department of Transportation to install, relocate, or expand utility facilities on or near an interstate or non-interstate highway right-of-way. 70:04 S.D. §§ 05-05.01. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-SD-c

Tennessee

In Tennessee, a bulk transmission developer may need to apply for and execute a Utility Use and Occupancy Agreement with the Tennessee Department of Transportation to install a new utility facility within a state highway right-of-way. Tenn. Comp. R. & Regs. 1680-6-1-.04. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-TN-c

Texas

In Texas, a bulk transmission developer may need a number of state highway encroachment permits from the Texas Department of Transportation for any project that encroaches on a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-TX-c

Utah

In Utah, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Encroachment Permit and/or a Grant of Access Permit from the Utah Department of Transportation for any projects that encroach upon a state highway. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-UT-c

Vermont

In Vermont, a bulk transmission developer may need a Highway Right-of-Way Permit from the Vermont Agency of Transportation prior to performing any work within or near a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-VT-c

Virginia

In Virginia, a bulk transmission developer may need a District-wide Permit, a Single Use Utility Installations Permit, and/or a Permit Agreement from the Virginia Department of Transportation to construct a transmission facility over, under, or within a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see: State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-VA-c

Washington

In Washington, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Permit or Franchise from the Washington State Department of Transportation to place a utility facility within a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-WA-c

West Virginia

In West Virginia, a bulk transmission developer may need a State Highway Right-of-Way Permit from the West Virginia Division of Highways for projects that encroach on a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-WV-c

Wisconsin

In Wisconsin, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Permit from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation to construct, operate and maintain utility facilities within a state trunk highway right-of-way. 66 Wis. Stat. §§ 66.0831. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way:
3-WI-c

Wyoming

In Wyoming, a bulk transmission developer may need a Utility Construction Authorization and/or an Access Permit from the Wyoming Department of Transportation for projects that encroach upon a state highway right-of-way. For more information, see:

State Highway Right-of-Way Overview:
3-WY-c

3.9 to 3.10 – Does the Project Require Access to Tribal Land?

If the project requires access to tribal land, the developer needs approval from the applicable tribe. There a three main ways a developer can gain access to tribal lands. First, if a tribe has entered into a Tribal Energy Resource Agreement (TERA), a tribe may enter into leases and business agreements for the purpose of energy resource development on tribal land for:

  • Exploration for, extraction of, or other development of the energy mineral resources of the Indian tribal located on tribal land including, but not limited to, marketing or distribution;
  • Construction or operation of an electric generation, transmission, or distribution facility located on tribal land; and
  • A facility to process or refine energy resources developed on tribal land.

Second, 25 U.S.C. 324 authorizes the Secretary of the United States Department of Interior to approve rights-of-way across tribal lands with approval from the tribe and the individual Indian landowners. Third, 25 U.S.C. 2218 allows individual Indian landowners to negotiate and authorize rights-of-way, leases, easements, or other approvals with the Secretary of the Interior’s approval. For more information, see:

Tribal Land Right-of-Way:
3-FD-b

3.11 to 3.12 – Does the Project Require Access to Federal Land?

If the project is on federal land, the land access approval process varies depending on which federal land management agency is responsible for overseeing the land. Potential federal land management agencies involved in the transmission siting process include:

3.13 to 3.14 – Does the Bureau of Land Management Manage the Land?

If the transmission project requires access to federal lands managed by the BLM (within the United States Department of Interior), the developer must receive a right-of-way (ROW) grant from the BLM under Title V of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (FLPMA) ( 43 U.S.C. 1761-1771) and the BLM’s implementing regulations in 43 CFR 2800 et seq. Generally, the BLM grants ROWs for a term appropriate for the life of the project. For more information, see:

Bureau of Land Management - Land Right-of-Way:
3-FD-c

3.15 to 3.16 – Does the U.S. Forest Service Manage the Land?

If the transmission project requires access to or across National Forest Systems (NFS) land managed by the USFS, the developer must receive rights-of-way approval through a Special Use Authorization under Title V of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976(FLPMA) ( 43 U.S.C. 1761-1771) and The USFS’s implementing regulations in 36 CFR 251 et seq. For more information, see:

United States Forest Service - Special Use Authorization:
3-FD-d

3.17 to 3.18 – Does the Bureau of Reclamation Manage the Land?

If the transmission project requires to or access federal lands managed by the BOR (within the United States Department of Interior), the developer must receive a rights-of-way grant from the BOR under Section 10 of the Act of August 4, 1939 (43 U.S.C. 387) and the BOR’s implementing regulations in 43 CFR 429 et seq. For more information, see:

Bureau of Reclamation - Use Authorization:
3-FD-e

3.19 to 3.20 – Does the National Park Service Manage the Land?

If the transmission project requires to or access federal lands within the National Park System, National Wild and Scenic Rivers System, National Trails System, National Heritage Areas, and other NPS Affiliated Areas, the developer must receive a right-of-way permit from the NPS (within the United States Department of Interior) usually under 16 U.S.C. 5 or 16 U.C.S. 79 and the NPS’s implementing regulations in 36 CFR 14.1 et seq. The NPS may only issue right-of-way permits if the uses or activities are specifically authorized by Congress and only if there is no practicable alternative to the use of NPS lands. For more information, see:

National Park Service - Land Right-of-Way:
3-FD-f

3.21 to 3.22 – Does the Department of Defense Manage the Land?

If a branch within the DOD manages the land, the developer must receive a right-of-way from the appropriate military branch. General authority for rights-of-way for electric power and communication lines is provided by 43 USC 961. In addition, some BLM-administered public land has been withdrawn from the public domain for exclusive military use. Any applications for a right-of-way or easement across BLM-administered land under exclusive military use require review and concurrence by the military branch. For more information, see.

Department of Defense - Land Right-of-Way:
3-FD-g

3.23 to 3.24 – Does the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Manage the Land?

If the project requires access to Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) managed lands, the developer must obtain a land right-of-way from FWS. FWS manages National Wildlife Refuge System lands. The National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act authorizes the FWS to grant rights-of-way for the construction of power transmission lines across System lands, as long as the use is compatible with the National Wildlife Refuge System mission and the purposes of the specific national wildlife refuge. FWS regulations governing the permitting of rights-of-way across System lands can be found at 50 CFR 29.21 and 29.22.

Authority for rights-of-way across FWS managed lands that are not System lands (including National Fish Hatcheries, Research Areas, and Administrative Sites) can be found in 43 CFR 2800. Rights-of-way across FWS managed non-System lands are also permitted under 50 CFR 29.21 and 29.22. For more information, see:

United States Fish and Wildlife Service - Land Right-of-Way:
3-FD-m

3.25 to 3.26 – Is the Project Within the Right-of-Way of Federal Aid or Direct Federal Highway Projects?

23 U.S.C. 109(l) allows the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to permit utility companies to utilize federal aid highway rights-of-way or direct federal highway rights-of-way to site transmission lines. Before approving the right-of-way, the FHWA must (1) ascertain the effect the transmission line will have on safety; (2) determine the environmental and economic effects on agriculture resulting from a disapproval of the right-of-way, and; (3) consider environmental and economic impacts together with the impairment the transmission lines would have on the use of the highway. No use may be authorized that would adversely affect safety.

For direct federal highway projects, approval must be obtained from the FHWA, and the FHWA applies accommodation policies similar to those required on federal aid highway projects. For federal aid highway projects, the applicable state department of transportation creates a utility accommodation plan. In both cases, the utility accommodation plans and policies must conform to the FHWA regulations found in 23 CFR 645.201 et seq. For more information, see:

Federal Highway Administration - Utility Accommodation:
3-FD-n

3.27 – Contact Managing Agency

In extremely rare cases, the managing agency may not be the BLM, USFS, BOR, NPS, DOD, or FWS. In those cases, the developer should contact the managing agency to determine what type of authorization is required.