§ 1301 Powers and duties; regulation of use of public roads and streets.
(a)(1) Every corporation organized under the provisions of Chapter 1 of Title 8 for the purpose of the production, distribution and sale of gas and also every corporation organized for the supply and distribution of water, every corporation organized for the collection and treatment of wastewater and every corporation organized for the transportation and storage of oil, in addition to the powers conferred upon corporations generally, may lay down necessary pipes, mains and conduits beneath the public roads, highways, streets, avenues and alleys of any county, city, incorporated town or district of this State.
(2) Such pipes, mains and conduits shall be laid at least 18 inches below the surface of the same and shall not in anywise unnecessarily obstruct or interfere with public travel or damage public or private property.
(3) The consent of the council, town commissioners or other persons having control over the public roads, highways, streets, avenues and alleys of the county, city, town and district wherein or through which it is contemplated to lay such pipes, mains and conduits beneath such public roads, highways, streets, avenues or alleys shall first and as a condition precedent be obtained before any such public roads, highways, streets, avenues or alleys are disturbed, opened or dug up. Such consent of such council or town commissioners or other persons having control over such roads, highways, streets, avenues and alleys shall be by ordinance of such council or commissioners duly adopted or by resolution of such persons having control over the public roads or highways, adopted at a meeting to be held not less than 30 days after notice thereof has been given by notices posted up in 5 of the most public places on the road or highway which is proposed to be used for such purposes.
(b)(1) Such use of public roads, highways or streets, avenues and alleys in any of the counties, cities, towns or districts in this State shall be subject to such terms, regulations, taxation and restrictions as may be imposed by the council, town commissioners or other persons having control over the public roads and highways of the county, city, town or district.
(2)a. The portions of the surfaces of the roads, highways, streets, avenues and alleys disturbed in laying the pipes shall be immediately restored to their original condition. Any pavements which are removed for the purpose of laying or repairing the pipes, mains and conduits shall be restored to as good condition as they were previous thereto and shall be maintained the same for 6 months after the completion of the work.
b. In case of failure on the part of the corporation to so restore and maintain the same, the street commissioner or other officer having supervision of the streets may properly restore and maintain the same, and the costs thereof may be recovered by the city or town from the corporation in any court of competent jurisdiction.
(c) Any such corporation mentioned in this section may take lands, easements and rights-of-way for locating, constructing, maintaining and operating its pumps, pump houses and stations, tanks and reservoirs, hydrants and delivery stations and offices and for laying down its pipes, tubes, conduits, connections and branches from any points to any other points in the State and for all necessary purposes of the corporation, including the right to cross any railroad, and the right to appropriate a right-of-way and locate its pipes, tubes or conduits upon, over or under and across any lands, water, streams, rivulets, canals, roads, turnpike roads or other highways in such manner as shall not interfere with the ordinary use of the same. In crossing any rivulet or other stream the pipes, tubes and conduits shall be laid and securely suspended above flood lines or laid beneath the bed of any rivulet or other stream so crossed.
§ 1302 Eminent domain.
In case any corporation mentioned in this chapter desiring to acquire, occupy or use any lands in this State for its corporate use cannot agree with the owner thereof as to the terms and conditions of such acquisition, occupancy or use and the value, compensation or damages to be paid for such acquisition, occupancy or use, it may acquire, use and hold such lands by condemnation proceeding in the manner prescribed by Chapter 61 of Title 10.
§ 1303 Crossing agricultural lands.
Any gas, oil or water company which lays pipes, tubes or conduits on any lands cleared and used for agricultural purposes shall bury the same at least 24 inches below the surface if so required by the owner of the land.
§ 1304 Expansion of facilities and services of water companies in New Castle County.
§ 1305 Establishment of a State Water Supply Coordinating Council.
(a) A Water Supply Coordinating Council is hereby established.
(1) The Council shall have the following members:
a. The Secretary of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control or the Secretary's designee;
b. The Secretary of the Department of Agriculture or the Secretary's designee;
c. The Executive Director of the Public Service Commission or the Executive Director's designee;
d. The Director of the Delaware Emergency Management Agency or the Director's designee;
e. The Director of the Division of Public Health or the Director's designee;
f. The Public Advocate or the Public Advocate's designee;
g. The Director of the Delaware Geological Survey or the Director's designee;
h. The Director of the Water Resources Agency at the University of Delaware or the Director's designee;
i. The Executive Director of the Delaware River Basin Commission or the Executive Director's designee;
j. A representative of the office of the Governor;
k. A representative of the Governments of New Castle County, Kent County and Sussex County;
l. A representative of each public and private water utility serving New Castle County;
m. A representative of public water supply utilities from the membership of Sussex County Association of Towns (SCAT);
n. A representative of public water supply utilities of Kent County from the membership of the League of Local Governments;
o. A representative from the Delaware Rural Water Association;
p. A representative from the membership of the Delaware Chapter of the National Association of Water Companies not included in "l'' above;
q. One representative from each county representing local Chambers of Commerce in New Castle County, Kent County and Sussex County;
r. A representative of the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce;
s. A representative of the New Castle County Chamber of Commerce;
t. A representative of the Delaware Nursery and Landscape Association;
u. A representative of the Delaware Grounds Management Association;
v. A representative of the Delaware State Golf Association;
w. A representative of the Delaware Nature Society;
x. A representative from the Delaware Farm Bureau;
y. A representative from the Center for Inland Bays;
z. The State Fire Marshal or the State Fire Marshal's designee;
aa. A representative from the Civic League of New Castle County;
bb. A representative from the Coalition of Natural Stream Valleys; and
cc. The State Climatologist or State Climatologist's designee.
(b) The Secretary of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control or the Secretary's designee shall serve as Chair of the Council.
(c) The Council, by majority vote, may establish subcommittees to address water supply issues and plans that do not require the full participation of the Council. The subcommittees shall report to the Council and any recommended actions shall require the approval of the Council.
§ 1306 Reports by the Water Supply Coordinating Council.
(a) The Water Resources Agency ("WRA''), the Delaware Geological Survey ("DGS''), the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control ("DNREC''), and the Division of Public Health (DPH) shall assist the Water Supply Coordinating Council ("WSCC'') to help ensure the timely implementation of the projects identified in the WSCC report dated January 17, 2003.
(b) The WRA, DGS, DNREC, and DPH shall prepare periodic reports on behalf of the Water Supply Coordinating Council (WSCC) for the Governor and the General Assembly summarizing the progress towards completion of the projects identified in the report. The first report shall be submitted on or before December 31, 2003, with additional reports submitted at least annually.
(c) The principal duty of the Council shall be to work cooperatively with WRA, DGS, DNREC, and DPH to continue to achieve water supply self sufficiency in northern New Castle County, and to develop and publish water supply plans for southern New Castle County, Kent County and Sussex County. These plans shall identify and describe uses, localities or areas where water supply issues exist and identify and describe localities or areas where future water supply issues may occur. These areas and uses should include, but not be limited to Middletown-Odessa-Townsend, Dover and central Kent County, Coastal Sussex County and agricultural irrigation uses. These plans shall contain an estimate of existing and future public and private water supplies and water demands through 2030. Private demands shall take into account, to the maximum extent practicable, all domestic, industrial and irrigation uses. Additional duties of the Council shall consist of performing the following specific functions:
(1) The WSCC may explore development of an appropriate funding mechanism to facilitate timely completion of necessary tasks to provide technical input in conducting hydraulic field tests and/or modeling to optimize and expand, where appropriate, water utility connections; and
(2) To work with water utilities to develop cost and capacity agreements subject to approval by the applicable rate-setting authority for the purchase of water supplies during drought and other times emphasizing the need for providers with supply deficiencies to enter agreements which assure adequate supply to customers;
§ 1307 Recovery of costs of water supply enhancement projects in rates of public utilities.
In the case of a public utility subject to the jurisdiction of the Public Service Commission, upon the determination by the Commission that a water supply enhancement project identified as necessary to assure adequate supply in a report of the Water Supply Coordinating Council has been placed into service by the utility and is used and useful in the provision of public utility service, the public utility shall be entitled to recover, in its rates, its reasonable and prudently incurred capital and ongoing operating costs for such project. Nothing in this section shall preclude the Commission from authorizing an allowance for funds used during construction for any such identified enhancement project.
§ 1308 Length of service for the Water Supply Coordinating Council.
The designation of the Water Supply Coordinating Council, and the duties and responsibilities conferred by this section shall end on January 31, 2022.