State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Wyoming > Title37 > Chapter7

CHAPTER 7 - Power Districts

 

ARTICLE 1 - IN GENERAL

 

37-7-101. Formation; petition for organization.

 

 

(a) Whenever a majority of the freeholderson lands and entrymen upon public lands in any district who shall represent atleast one-third of the area of lands within said district which desire toprovide for the purchase of electric power for use in electrifying the landswithin said district or to purchase, extend, operate, or maintain consecutivepower lines; or to cooperate with the United States, the state of Wyoming, orany subdivision thereof, they shall procure a certificate of necessity from thepublic service commission of the state of Wyoming, and file in the districtcourt of the county which embraces the largest acreage of the district apetition hereinafter referred to as the "petition" which shallinclude:

 

(i) The name of the proposed power district;

 

(ii) The necessity of the proposed work, describing thenecessity and attaching such certificate of necessity issued by the publicservice commission thereto;

 

(iii) The object and purpose of the system to be constructedtogether with a general description thereof;

 

(iv) The names of all freeholders holding lands and the entrymenon public lands in said district when known;

 

(v) Whether or not the petitioners desire and propose tocooperate with the United States, the state of Wyoming or any subdivisionthereof;

 

(vi) A general prayer for the organization of the district.

 

(b) No petition having as many signers as are required by thissection shall be declared void, but the court may at any time permit thepetition to be amended in form and substance to conform to the facts, if thefacts justify the organization of the power district. Several similar petitionsfor the organization of the same district may be circulated, and when filed,shall together be regarded as one petition having as many signers as there areseparate signers on the several petitions filed. All petitions for theorganization of said district filed prior to the hearing on said petition shallbe considered by the court, the same as if filed with the first petition placedon file, and the signatures thereon contained shall be counted in determiningwhether sufficient persons have signed said petition.

 

37-7-102. Lands need not be contiguous; benefits to exceed damages andcosts; must be cheaper as single district.

 

Thelands proposed to be included in any power district need not be contiguous,provided that the benefits of the proposed work in each part will exceed thedamages from and costs of said proposed work in each part; and provided,further, that the court shall be satisfied that said proposed work can be morecheaply done if in a single district than otherwise.

 

37-7-103. Time and place of hearing on petition; notice.

 

Onsuch petition being filed the court or judge thereof shall make an order fixingthe time and place of the hearing thereon and ordering notice; thereupon theclerk of said county, for the county in which the proceedings are instituted,shall cause twenty (20) days notice of the filing of such petition to be given.

 

37-7-104. Contests and objections at hearing; notices of contest orobjection; court to hear and determine issues.

 

 

(a) On the day fixed for hearing on suchpetitions all persons owning or entitled to the possession of lands, or anyinterest or easement in land, within said proposed district, or who would beaffected thereby, may appear and contest or object to:

 

(i) The sufficiency of the petition;

 

(ii) The sufficiency of the signers of the petition;

 

(iii) The sufficiency of the notice;

 

(iv) The constitutionality of the law;

 

(v) The inclusion or exclusion of any lands in the district, orany other material issue raised by the petition;

 

(vi) The jurisdiction of the court, specifying their objectionsto such jurisdiction.

 

(b) The petitioners and contestants may, on the trial, offerany competent evidence in regard thereto. All notices of contest or objectionshall be in writing and shall clearly specify the grounds of contest orobjection and shall be filed in the office of the clerk of the court [prior] tothe date fixed for said hearing. The court shall on the day fixed for saidhearing, hear and determine all issues provided in this section and may adjournsaid hearing from time to time, for good and sufficient reasons shown.

 

37-7-105. Nonresident landowners to be specified on affidavit withpetition; notice by mail; personal service to establish jurisdiction.

 

Ifany of the persons owning or entitled to possession of land in said districtare nonresidents of the county or counties in which the proposed district lies,the petition shall be accompanied by an affidavit giving the names andpost-office address of each such nonresident, if such are known, and if unknownshall state that, upon diligent inquiry their names or post-office addresses(whichever may be the fact) cannot be ascertained. The clerk of the court shallmail a copy of the notice aforesaid to each of said nonresident owners whosepost-office address is known, within six (6) days after the first publicationof the same. The certificate of the clerk of the court, or other publicofficer, or the affidavit of any other person who knows the facts, affixed to acopy of said notice, shall be sufficient evidence of the posting, serving,mailing or publication thereof. Personal service of said notice on (or serviceby leaving at the last usual place of abode of) all persons owning or entitledto possession of lands or interest in lands within said district, shall givethe court complete jurisdiction, without posting, publication or mailing ofsaid notice.

 

37-7-106. Affidavit of signers evidence of facts therein.

 

Theaffidavit of any three (3) or more of the signers of said petition stating thatthey have examined it and are acquainted with the locality of said district andthat said petition is signed by a sufficient number of corporations and adultpersons owning lands in said district, to satisfy section 1 hereof, may betaken by the court or judge as sufficient evidence of the facts therein stated.

 

37-7-107. Transfer of lands to establish or defeat petition; filing ofpetition lis pendens against lands therein.

 

Alldeeds made for the purpose of establishing or defeating the prayer of saidpetition, and not made in good faith and for a valuable consideration, shall betaken and held to be a fraud, and the holders thereof shall not be consideredas the owners of the lands described therein; and the filing of said petitionshall constitute a lis pendens against all lands described therein, from andafter the filing thereof.

 

37-7-108. Petition dismissed for improper signatures; costs; court toinclude or exclude lands from district.

 

Ifthe court or presiding judge thereof, after hearing any and all competentevidence that may be offered for and against the said petition, shall find thatthe same has not been signed as herein required, the said petition shall bedismissed at the cost of the petitioners, and judgment shall be entered againstsaid petitioners for the amount of said costs. The court shall upon proper showinginclude or exclude any land from the district.

 

37-7-109. Order of court upon decision for petitioners; appointment ofcommissioners; findings and orders final unless appealed.

 

(a) If the issues at this hearing aredecided in favor of the petitioners, the court shall make an order:

 

(i) Approving and confirming the petition;

 

(ii) Defining the boundaries of the district;

 

(iii) Establishing said district as a corporation by the nameproposed with powers:

 

(A) To sue and be sued;

 

(B) To adopt and use a corporate seal;

 

(C) To have perpetual succession;

 

(D) To build or otherwise acquire power lines and thetransformers and other electrical equipment necessary to connect with powerlines of the United States, the state of Wyoming, or any subdivision thereof totransmit power to any and all persons deciding to use same;

 

(E) To exercise the power of eminent domain as provided by thelaws of the state of Wyoming.

 

(iv) Appointing three (3) commissioners from such districts whoshall be freeholders or entrymen upon public lands in said district.

 

(b) The commissioners appointed by the court shall at all timesbe under the direction of the court and may be removed from office by the courtupon good cause shown; provided, however, no commissioner shall be removeduntil written charges specifying the grounds upon which such removal is soughtare filed and an opportunity given such commissioner to be heard at a hearingprovided. In case a commissioner has been removed under this provision thecourt shall immediately appoint a successor.

 

(c) All findings and orders of the court made at the hearingherein provided for shall be final and conclusive unless appealed from to the supremecourt within thirty (30) days after filing thereof.

 

37-7-110. Oath and bond of commissioners; quorum; majority rule; termof office.

 

Beforeentering upon their duties, such commissioners shall take and subscribe an oathto support the constitution of the United States and the constitution of thestate of Wyoming, to faithfully and impartially discharge their duties as suchcommissioners and to render a true account of their doings to the court bywhich they are appointed whenever required by law or the order of the court,and shall execute a bond running to the clerk of said court and his successorsin office as obligees, to be filed with said clerk for the benefit of theparties interested, in an amount to be fixed by the court or presiding judge,and with sureties to be approved by the court or presiding judge, conditionedfor the faithful discharge of their duties as such commissioners and thefaithful accounting of all moneys which shall come into their hands as suchcommissioners. A majority shall constitute a quorum and a concurrence of amajority in any matter within their duties shall be sufficient to itsdetermination. The commissioners appointed shall hold their office until thefirst Tuesday in the second succeeding December following the date of orderorganizing such district and until their respective successors are qualified.

 

37-7-111. Records of commissioners; annual statement; compensation andexpenses; suit upon bonds.

 

Thecommissioners shall keep an accurate record of all moneys collected on accountof the work under their charge and of all payments made by them and shall takevouchers of such payments and shall keep full, accurate and true minutes of alltheir proceedings. On the first day of November each year they shall file inthe office of the clerk of the court having jurisdiction in the matter anitemized statement of all their receipts and disbursements, and leave saidreport in such office for examination by parties interested at all times; andinclude a copy thereof in the regular call for the annual meeting hereinafterprovided. They shall receive for their services such compensation as the courtor presiding judge thereof may determine. They shall also be reimbursed fortheir actual reasonable expenses. Suit may also be brought upon their bonds,and the amount recovered shall be applied to the construction of the work or tothe party injured, as justice may require.

 

37-7-112. Commissioners to constitute corporate authority;organization; powers of board.

 

Thecommissioners appointed as aforesaid and their successors in office shall, fromthe entry of such order of confirmation constitute the corporate authority ofsaid power district, and shall exercise the power conferred on them by law.They shall organize a board, elect a president from their number and appoint asecretary-treasurer. The board shall have power, and it shall be their duty toadopt bylaws, manage and conduct the affairs and business of the district, makeand execute all necessary contracts, employ such agents, attorneys, officersand employees as may be required and prescribe their duties; to purchaseelectric current for light, heat and power purposes; to purchase, construct orotherwise acquire, power lines, transformers and other electrical equipmentnecessary to conduct and transmit such electric current to various people ofthe district who desire to use such electric current.

 

37-7-113. Duties of commissioners as to proposed work; report tocourt.

 

 

(a) As soon as may be after the organizationof said district or within such time as the court may direct, saidcommissioners shall proceed to have all necessary surveys made and shall lay outsaid proposed work making a map thereof, and plans and other specificationsthereof, and report in writing to the court:

 

(i) The extent and character of the proposed work;

 

(ii) If it be found necessary to change the boundaries of thesaid proposed district, previously fixed, they shall report said proposedchange, and, if possible, shall report the names, the residence and post-officeaddresses of the owners or persons entitled to possession of all lands affectedby said change in boundaries, but no such change in boundaries, shall be madeas to deprive the court of jurisdiction; provided, however, that if the ownersand those entitled to possession, by virtue of public land filing, of landsadjacent to the district, petition to have their lands brought into thedistrict, such petitioners may be considered the same as the originalpetitioners in making changes of boundaries;

 

(iii) What lands within the district, as by them reported, willbe injured by the proposed work, if any, and they shall therein award to eachtract, lot, easement or interest by whomsoever held the amount of damages whichthey shall determine will be caused to the same by the proposed work;

 

(iv) All lands within the district as by them reported will bebenefited by the proposed work and they shall assess against such lands bywhomsoever held the amount of benefits which they determine will be caused tothe same by the proposed work. The benefits so assessed are herein referred toas "the assessment roll";

 

(v) They shall also determine and report to the court the totalitemized amount as near as they can determine, that said proposed work willcost, including organization expenses and the unit cost upon which theassessments are based, which shall be designated as "cost ofconstruction";

 

(vi) The cost of construction which shall be assessed to thevarious tracts of land within said district in proportion to the assessedvaluation of each of such tracts of land as such valuation was last fixed anddetermined by the county assessor and county board of equalization of thecounty in which said lands are situated.

 

37-7-114. Notice and hearing on report of commissioners.

 

Uponthe filing of said report, the court or judge thereof shall make and enter anorder fixing the time and place when and where all persons interested mayappear and remonstrate against the confirmation thereof, and the clerk of saidcourt shall cause notice of the time and place of such hearing to be given toall parties interested which notice shall contain a brief description of thelands benefited and damaged, together with the net damage awarded the severaltracts, parcels, easements and corporations to which damages are awarded, andthe sum in each case assessed for benefits, and cost of construction againstsaid several benefited parcels, tracts, easements and corporations, and thebenefits apportioned to each parcel, tract, easement or corporation in thedistrict. Said notice shall be published at least three (3) successive weeks,prior to the day set for the hearing in one newspaper published in each countyin which said lands, or any part thereof within said district are situate (andif no newspaper is published in said county, in some newspaper in an adjoiningcounty), and by serving a copy of such notice on each of the persons, orcorporations, by said report recommended, to be assessed, or whose lands are bysaid report recommended to be included in said district and who resides in anyof the counties in which any lands of the proposed district are situated, atleast twelve (12) days before the day of hearing in the same manner that asummons is required to be served; provided, absence from the county of suchperson or corporation shall excuse personal service, whereupon due publicationof such notice shall be sufficient service.

 

37-7-115. Notice when lands situate in more than one county.

 

Incase the lands are situated in more than one county the notice published in thecounty wherein the court having jurisdiction is situated shall contain adescription of all the lands in said proposed district [with] the damagesawarded to the several parcels thereof, but the notice published in any othercounty or counties may contain a description of only the lands situate in saidcounty for which said publication is made, together with the damages awarded toand assessments for benefits against the several tracts, parcels, easements andinterests situate in said county for which publication is made. In case ofservice of said notice personally, or the acceptance and waiver thereof of allthe owners of the lands within the district, said service shall be sufficientand give the court jurisdiction without said publication.

 

37-7-116. Modification of report by order of court.

 

Ifthe court finds that the report requires modification, the same may by order ofthe court be referred back to the commissioners, who may be required to modifyit in any respect.

 

37-7-117. Order of confirmation of report or modified report; effectof confirmation; appeal.

 

Ifthere be no remonstrance, or if the finding be in favor of the validity of theproceedings, or after the report shall have been modified to conform to thefindings, the court shall confirm the report and the order of confirmationshall be final and conclusive, the proposed work shall be established andauthorized, and the proposed assessments approved and confirmed unless withinthirty (30) days an appeal be taken to the supreme court, and the said order ofconfirmation shall also fix the commissioner's bond.

 

37-7-118. Petitions regarding orders of confirmation; supplementalreport from commissioners.

 

Saidorder of confirmation may, at the same or at any subsequent term of said courtbe revised, modified or changed, in whole or in part, on petition of thecommissioners, after such notice as the court may require to partiesinterested. At any time prior to making the order confirming said report orthereafter, the court may permit the commissioners to present and file asupplemental report, or amend their report, as to any matter which, pursuant tothe provisions hereof, was or might have been included in the original reportpresented by them, and after reasonable notice given to all parties interested,in such manner as the court shall direct, the court may, upon the hearing insaid matter make such order as the case may require.

 

37-7-119. Assessment for construction; time of payment; interest.

 

Atthe time of the confirmation of such assessments, it shall be competent for thecourt to order the assessment for construction to be paid in not more thantwenty (20) installments, of such amounts and at such times as will beconvenient for the accomplishment of the proposed work, or for the payment ofprincipal and interest of such notes or bonds of said district, as the courtshall grant authority to issue for the construction of said work. The court mayalso, by such order, fix a date on which the first installment of theassessments of construction shall become due, not more than five (5) yearsafter the date of the order, and each of said installments shall draw interestat a rate not to exceed seven percent (7%) per annum from the date of saidorder.

 

37-7-120. Assessments due at same time as taxes; budget to be filedand approved by court; expenditures in excess of budget; unauthorized debtsvoid.

 

(a) Assessments to meet expenses of any currentyear of any district shall become due, payable and delinquent at such time ortimes each year as may be fixed by law for state and county taxes to becomedue, payable and delinquent. Commissioners having charge of any power districtshall on or before the first Tuesday of June of each year file with the clerkof the court having jurisdiction of such district, a report showing an itemizedestimate of the money to be raised by assessment within the district for thepurpose of constructing new work, maintenance, and to meet the yearly currentexpenses of the district. In addition to the amount above provided, thecommissioners may add a sum which in their judgment shall be sufficient toprovide for possible delinquencies. Within thirty (30) days after filing suchannual report, at a time and place to be fixed by the court or a judge thereof,the judge shall examine such report, hear all objections thereto, fix anddetermine the amount to be raised by assessments for the current year and causesuch adjudication to be entered of record in said court and a certified copythereof to be delivered to the commissioners of such district. Thecommissioners shall add thereto such amount as may be necessary to meet theprincipal and interest on lawful indebtedness of the district maturing duringthe current year, together with a sum which in their judgment shall besufficient to provide for possible delinquencies. When thus completed it shallbe known as "The Budget of .... District for the year (year)" andalso be verified under oath by any one of the commissioners.

 

(b) The commissioners of any power district within the state ofWyoming are hereby forbidden to incur any indebtedness for the current expensesof the district in excess of the amount provided in the budget. Provided,however, in case a greater sum than that provided in the budget is required,the commissioners may file a petition setting forth the causes therefor, withthe clerk of the court having jurisdiction of said district. Immediately uponthe filing of said petition the court shall make an order fixing the time andplace of hearing and directing the form and manner of notice thereof to begiven if the court deem such hearing advisable. If the court shall authorizethe expenditure of a greater sum of money the commissioners shall be authorizedto incur indebtedness equal to the amount of the additional sum authorized bythe court, and in case the expenditure occurs at a time when it is too late toplace the amount upon the assessment roll for the current year such amounts maybe added to the budget of ensuing years. All debts contracted in contraventionof this section shall be void.

 

37-7-121. Preparation of assessment roll; assessments based on countyassessments; commissioners to verify; levy of assessments; assessments toextend to tax roll.

 

Itshall be the duty of the commissioners of each power district on or before thethird Monday in July in each year to prepare an assessment roll of saiddistrict which shall contain the name of the owner together with thedescription of each lot, tract and easement of land within said district andthe aggregate assessment of benefits confirmed by the court against the same.Assessments to meet the current expense of a power district for any year shallbe proportioned upon the assessed valuation of the several benefited lots,tracts and easements in the district as such valuation was last fixed forassessment purposes by the county assessor and county board of equalization ofthe county in which the same are situated. The assessment roll shall also showthe amount assessed against each lot, tract, and easement of land in thedistrict to meet the principal and interest or the indebtedness of the districtfor the current year. When such assessment roll is completed it shall be signedby the commissioners of said district and verified by any one of them. Thecounty commissioners of said county upon the receipt of the assessment roll ofsaid district and at the time of making the requisite tax levy for county purposes,shall levy and assess against each lot, tract, and easement of land therespective amounts levied and assessed against the same on said assessmentroll. Thereupon the county commissioners shall certify to and deliver saidassessment roll to the county assessor of such county and in case the territoryembraced in such district is located in two (2) or more counties a copy of theassessment roll as certified to by the county commissioners of the countyhaving jurisdiction of such district shall be delivered to the assessor of eachcounty in which any of the land of the district is located. Upon receipt of theassessment roll the assessors of the counties embracing any of the lands ofsuch district, shall extend upon the tax roll of such county the respectiveamounts levied and assessed against each lot, tract, and easement of land, andagainst each corporation as shown by said assessment roll of said district.

 

37-7-122. County treasurer to collect taxes; interest coupons or bondsof district authorized for payment of district bond taxes; duty of countycommissioners as to unpaid taxes.

 

Itshall be the duty of the county treasurer of each county in which any powerdistrict is located in whole or in part to collect and receipt for all taxeslevied as herein provided in the same manner as is required in the receipt forand collection of taxes upon real estate for county purposes. The countytreasurer in case of taxes heretofore or hereafter levied as herein providedshall receive in payment of the district bond taxes above mentioned for theyear in which said taxes were levied, interest coupons or bonds of said powerdistricts maturing within said year the same as so much lawful money in theUnited States. Provided, however, that in the case of the nonpayment of anytaxes which have heretofore or may hereafter be levied as above provided, theboard of county commissioners upon application made shall have the power and itshall be their duty, upon written request of the board of such power district,to order the said treasurer to receive in full payment of the bond fund portionof said taxes the principal amount of said taxes levied, payable in bonds orbond interest coupons of said power district at their face value, and maturingwithin the year in which said tax levies were made, as so much lawful money ofthe United States.

 

37-7-123. Inspection and repair of power lines.

 

Thecommissioners and agents, servants and employees shall have the right to goupon all lands along any power line to inspect and repair the same whenevernecessary, doing no unnecessary damage, and shall not be liable for trespasstherefor.

 

37-7-124. Necessary additional assessments authorized under courtorder; notice required; payment.

 

Ifany assessment for construction, operation, maintenance or repair that thecommissioners shall have reported to the court is a smaller sum than is neededto carry out the purpose for which said assessment has been made or if in anyyear an additional sum is necessary to pay the interest on lawful indebtednessof said power districts, further or additional assessments on the landsbenefited shall be made by the commissioners of said power district under theorder of the court or presiding judge thereof, upon such notice as the court orjudge may direct, which further or additional assessment may be made payable ininstallments as specified herein and shall be treated and collected in the samemanner as the original assessments confirmed by the court in said powerdistrict.

 

37-7-125. Omission of assessments not to affect jurisdiction of courtor render previous assessments voidable; commissioners to correct omissions andreport to court.

 

Omissionto assess benefits, or to assess for construction, or to make additionalassessment or to make assessment for operation, maintenance or repairs againstany land or person which should have been assessed, or to award damages to anyone or more tracts of land or assessments in a power district shall neitheraffect the jurisdiction of the court to confirm the report, nor to render thebenefits assessed or the assessments for construction, or additionalassessments, or assessments for operation, maintenance, or repairs againstother lands or assessments against any person voidable, but the commissionersof said power district shall thereafter, as soon as they discover the omissionor receive notice thereof, either agree with the omitted parties upon theproper award or assessments and award the damages or make such assessments ofbenefits or assessments for construction, operation, maintenance or repair, andmake such additional assessments against the omitted lands and corporations andaward such damages as shall be just, and report the facts, together with suchassessments and awards, to the court.

 

37-7-126. Commissioners may borrow for unpaid construction or lawfuldebts; issuance of notes or bonds; interest specified.

 

Thecommissioners may borrow money, not exceeding the amount of "assessmentfor construction" as herein provided, unpaid at the time of borrowing forsuch purposes, or for the payment of any indebtedness that may have beenlawfully incurred, and may secure the same by notes or bonds bearing interestat a rate not to exceed seven percent (7%) per annum and not running beyond one(1) year after the last installment of the assessment, on the account of whichthe money is borrowed, shall fall due, which said notes or bonds shall not besold at less than ninety percent (90%) of their face value, which said bondsshall be transferable by delivery to the same extent as negotiable paper of thehighest character; and may deliver notes or bonds to the United States to beheld and when deemed desirable or when the appraised value of the land in thedistrict is double the bonded indebtedness, sold by it, and the net proceedsreceived from the notes or bonds applied to the liquidation of contractindebtedness of the district, and said notes or bonds shall be in such form,terms and denominations as may be fixed by the court, but which notes or bondsshall not be held to make the commissioners personally liable, but shallconstitute a lien upon the assessments for the repayment of the principal andinterest of such notes or bonds. In case any moneys derived from bonds sold topay for the construction, as herein provided, now or hereafter, remains on handafter such work is completed and paid for, and not raised for damages unpaidfor, such residue may be used in the maintenance and repair, as in this chapterprovided, before making assessment for such maintenance and repair.

 

37-7-127. Refunding of indebtedness.

 

Thecourt, may, upon the petition of the commissioners authorize them to refund anylawful indebtedness of the district now existing or which may hereafter beincurred by taking up and canceling all or any part of its outstanding notesand bonds, as fast as they come due or before, if the holders thereof willsurrender the same and issue in lieu thereof new notes or bonds of suchdistrict, payable in such longer time as the court shall deem proper, in anamount sufficient to retire notes and bonds of the district then outstandingand the unpaid accrued interest thereon, together with such an amount as thecommissioners of such district may deem necessary to provide for possiblefuture defaults and delinquencies in the payment of assessments, and bearinginterest not exceeding seven percent (7%) per annum. For the purpose ofproviding funds to pay such refunding bonds with interest thereon, thecommissioners may levy assessments against the land in such district, but notin excess of the benefits assessed. In the alternative the commissioners may,if they deem it advisable, issue said refunding bonds in an amount sufficientonly to retire all notes and bonds of the district then outstanding and theunpaid accrued interest thereon, and delinquencies in the payment ofassessments levied, from year to year, assessments against the land in suchdistrict for such purposes, but not in excess of the benefits assessed againstthe same.

 

37-7-128. Construction to be done by lowest responsible bidder;advertisement for bids; applicability of section.

 

Inall cases where the work to be done at any one time under the directions of thecommissioners will, in their opinion, cost to exceed twenty-five hundreddollars ($2,500.00), the same shall be let to the lowest responsible bidder,and the commissioners shall advertise for sealed bids, by notice published insome newspaper published in the county in which the petition is filed, and mayadvertise in one (1) or more newspapers published elsewhere. If there be nonewspaper published in the county in which the petition is filed, they shalladvertise in some newspaper published in an adjoining county, which said noticeshall particularly set forth the time and place when and where the bidsadvertised will be opened, the kind of work to be let and the terms of payment.Said commissioners may continue the letting from time to time, if in theirjudgment the same shall be necessary, and shall reserve the right to reject anyand all bids. This section shall not be construed to apply to the employment ofsuperintendent, engineer, attorney or other employee engaged in the generalwork of the district.

 

37-7-129. Payment, tender or deposit of damages required before startof construction; exception.

 

Thedamages allowed to the owners of lands shall be paid or tendered before thecommissioners shall be authorized to enter upon the lands for damage to whichthe award is made, for the construction of any power line or other workproposed thereon. If the owner is unknown or there shall be a contest in regardto the ownership of the lands, or the owner will not receive payment, or thereexists a mortgage or other lien against the same, or the commissioners cannotfor any other reason pay him, they may deposit the said damages with the clerkof the court, for the benefit of the owner, or parties interested, to be paidor distributed as the court shall direct, and such payment shall have the sameeffect as the tender to and acceptance of the damages awarded by the trueowners of the land. This section shall not, however, prevent saidcommissioners, their agents, servants and employees, going upon said lands todo any and all work found necessary prior to making their assessment ofbenefits and award of damages, and the trial on their report thereof.

 

37-7-130. Assessments as lien against property.

 

Eachand every sum assessed in any power district organized in the manner hereinprovided, as soon as such assessment is confirmed by the court, shall be and isdeclared to be a lien against the land so assessed, and unless some othermethod of collection is herein provided, it shall be collected in the samemanner as any other money judgment, provided that whenever said assessment is alien upon land it shall only be collected on said land on which it is a lien.

 

37-7-131. Bonds not adversely affected by change in assessment.

 

Nobonds or other money obligations issued by any power district shall beadversely affected by any subsequent change in assessment of benefits.

 

37-7-132. Commissioners declared public officers; acts presumedregular and valid; burden of proof on contestant.

 

Commissionersof power districts are hereby declared to be public officers. The presumptionshall be in favor of the regularity and validity of all their official acts.Whenever any report of the commissioners of any power district or any part ofany such report is contested, remonstrated against or called in question, theburden of proof shall rest upon the contestant, remonstrant or questioner.

 

37-7-133. Order confirming assessments as evidence of regularity.

 

Theorder confirming the assessments of benefits shall be conclusive as to theregularity of all proceedings relating to the assessments of benefits unlessappealed from within thirty (30) days after the entry of such order.

 

37-7-134. Election of commissioners; date; term of office.

 

Uponthe third Tuesday in November next preceding the expiration of terms of officeof any power district commissioners appointed in any power district organizedunder the provisions of this chapter, there shall be elected three (3)commissioners for such power district, one (1) for the term of one (1) year,one (1) for the term of two (2) years, and one (1) for the term of three (3)years, and upon the third Tuesday in November of each year thereafter anelection shall be held to elect a commissioner to succeed the outgoingcommissioner whose term of office shall be for a period of three (3) years.

 

37-7-135. Election of commissioners; hour and place; notice; votersqualified; conduct; proxies; record required.

 

Thecommissioners of the district shall fix the hour and place within theboundaries of the district of each election and preside at the same. It shallbe the duty of the commissioners at least twenty (20) days prior to the date ofthe election to mail to each person entitled to vote at his or her last knownplace of residence or business, a notice stating the time, place and purpose ofsuch election. Every person owning or entitled by virtue of public land filingto the possession of land situated within and being a part of any district, inwhich an election is to be held, shall be entitled to cast one (1) vote forevery one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) of assessed valuation of real propertyowned by him or her within said power district, or the major portion thereof,providing, that each person owning lands or entitled by virtue of public landfiling to possession of land within said district shall be entitled to at leastone (1) vote. At the hour and place of such election the commissioners shallcall the roll of those entitled to vote and the number of votes each isentitled to. They shall make a record of the qualified voters present, receiveall proxies, and prescribe the manner of canvassing votes. All proxies shall bein writing and signed by the person entitled to vote.

 

37-7-136. Election of commissioners; votes necessary to elect; fillingof vacancies; qualifications and duties of commissioners elected.

 

Noperson shall be elected as commissioner who shall not have received a majorityof all votes cast. No election shall be invalid by reason of the fact that amajority of the assessed valuation of real estate within the district was notrepresented at such election. Whenever the office of any elected commissionershall become vacant by reason of death, resignation or other cause, the vacancyshall be filled by the surviving commissioners for the unexpired term. In casesuch vacancy is not filled within thirty (30) days the court shall fill suchvacancy. All elected commissioners shall have the same qualifications andduties as herein prescribed for appointed commissioners.

 

ARTICLE 2 - REVENUE BOND POWER DISTRICTS

 

37-7-201. Petition for organization; assessments against real estate.

 

Ifthe petition for the organization of a power district under W.S. 37-7-101,states that the bonds to be issued by such district for the purpose of raisingmoney shall be a lien only upon the power plant, distribution system, and otherproperty used in the manufacture or distribution of electrical energy, and uponthe revenues from electrical energy so developed or distributed, the petitionor petitions of fifty (50) freeholders of the area to be served shall besufficient to give the court jurisdiction to hear such petition, and toorganize a power district; provided, no district organized under a petitionproviding such revenue bonds only, shall have authority to make any assessmentsagainst the real estate of the district, unless it shall amend its petition andfollow the procedure provided in W.S. 37-7-101.

 

37-7-202. Bonds issued only when authorized by district court; hearingand notice; interest rate; conditions of sale.

 

Powerdistricts organized pursuant to petitions stating that the bonds to be issuedby the district for the purpose of raising money shall be a lien only upon thepower plant, distribution system and other property used in the manufacture ordistribution of electrical energy, and upon the revenues from electrical energyso developed or distributed, may issue bonds only when so authorized by the districtcourt having jurisdiction thereof, and the bonds shall not be offered for saleto the public generally unless the court shall so provide in its order.Commissioners of a district desiring to issue bonds, shall first present to thecourt a full showing of the necessity and proposed conditions of the bonds,and, after giving such notice as the court may require to all partiesinterested, the court shall hear the petition and make orders fixing the termsand conditions of bond issue as shall to the court seem proper. Bonds shall notbe sold at less than ninety percent (90%) of their par value.

 

37-7-203. W.S. 37-7-201 through 37-7-212 to be cumulative authority;existing laws not repealed.

 

Thisact shall be construed as cumulative authority for the purposes named insections 1 and 2 hereof, and as to the manner and form of issuing revenue bondsfor any such purpose or purposes, and shall not be construed to repeal anyexisting laws with respect thereto, it being the purpose and intention of thisact to create an additional and alternate method for the purposes herein named.

 

37-7-204. Payment of principal and interest to be from revenues only;not to constitute indebtedness of borrower.

 

Theprincipal of and interest upon such bonds shall be payable solely from therevenues derived from the operation of the power system or plant, electriclight plant, power plant, power lines, transmission lines, or powerdistributing systems, for the purchase, construction, improvement, enlargement,extension, or repair of which the same are issued. No bond or coupon issuedpursuant to this act shall constitute an indebtedness of such borrower withinthe meaning of any state constitutional provision or statutory limitation. Itshall be plainly stated on the face of each such bond and coupon that the samehas been issued under the provisions of this act and that it does notconstitute an indebtedness of such borrower within any state constitutionalprovision or statutory limitation.

 

37-7-205. Bonds a mortgage lien for benefit of bond and couponholders.

 

Saidbonds shall be construed to and shall create a statutory mortgage lien upon anysuch power system, power plant, electric light plant, power lines, transmissionlines, or power distributing system or systems, and the appurtenances andextensions thereto so to be purchased, constructed, improved, enlarged,extended or repaired, to and in favor of the holders of said bonds and each ofthem and to and in favor of the holders of the coupons of said bonds, and eachof them.

 

37-7-206. System to remain subject to mortgage lien; proceedings tocompel performance of official duties; forced sale not authorized.

 

Suchsystem so purchased, constructed, improved, enlarged, extended or repairedshall remain subject to said statutory mortgage lien until payment in full ofthe principal of and interest upon said bonds. Any holder of any of said bondsor of any of the coupons representing interest accrued thereon, may, either atlaw or in equity, by suit, action, mandamus, or other proceedings, protect andenforce said statutory mortgage lien, and may, by suit, action, mandamus, orother proceedings, enforce and compel performance of all duties of theofficials of the borrower, including the fixing of sufficient rates, thecollection of revenues, the proper segregation of the revenues of the system,and the proper application thereof. Provided, however, that said statutorymortgage lien shall not be construed to give any such bond or coupon holderauthority to compel the sale of such system or any part thereof.

 

37-7-207. Appointment of receiver in case of default upon bonds.

 

Ifthere be any default in the payment of the principal of or interest upon any ofsaid bonds, any court having jurisdiction in any proper action may appoint a receiverto administer and operate the system so encumbered on behalf of the borrowerwith power to fix and charge rates and collect revenues sufficient to providefor the payment of any bonds or other obligations outstanding against saidsystem and for the payment of the expenses of operating and maintaining thesame and to apply the income and revenues of said system in conformity withthis act and the order providing for the issuance of such bonds.

 

37-7-208. Bonds and coupons held by governmental agencies exempt fromtaxes.

 

Thebonds and interest coupons issued hereunder are hereby exempted from any andall state, county, municipal and other taxation whatsoever under the laws ofthe state of Wyoming, and it shall be plainly stated on the face of each suchbond as follows: "The principal of and interest on this bond are exemptedfrom any and all state, county and municipal and other taxation whatsoeverunder the laws of the state of Wyoming, provided, however, that this exemptionshall apply only to such bonds and coupons owned and held by the public worksadministration or other governmental agencies."

 

37-7-209. Bonds negotiable instruments.

 

Suchbonds shall have all the qualities of negotiable instruments under the lawmerchant and the Negotiable Instruments Law.

 

37-7-210. Disposition of proceeds from sale of bonds; funds to be usedonly on system; unexpended balance; purchase and cancellation of bonds.

 

Thecommissioners of any such power district shall require that the proceeds of thesale of bonds issued under the provisions of this act be deposited in a specialaccount or accounts in a bank or banks which are members of the federal reservesystem, and shall require, insofar as practicable, that each such deposit besecured by the United States government securities having an aggregate marketvalue at least equal to the sum at the time on deposit, or, in any event, theproceeds shall be deposited in some bank or other depository, either within orwithout the state, which will secure such deposit satisfactorily to saidgoverning body. All moneys received from any such bonds shall be used solelyfor the purchase, construction, improvement, enlargement, extension or repair ofthe system for which issued, including any engineering, legal and otherexpenses incident thereto; provided, however, that such moneys may be used alsoto advance the payment of the interest on such bonds during the first three (3)years following the date of such bonds. Provided, that any unexpended balanceof the proceeds of the sale of any such bonds remaining after the completion ofthe project for which issued shall be paid immediately into the bond andinterest redemption fund for such bonds, and the same shall be used only forthe payment of the principal of the bonds, and interest for the first three (3)years following the date of the bonds, or, in the alternative, to acquireoutstanding bonds of the general issue from which the proceeds were derived, bypurchase of such bonds at a price (exclusive of accrued interest) not exceedingthe face amount thereof. Any bonds so acquired by purchase shall be cancelledand shall not be reissued.

 

37-7-211. Rates for services.

 

Ratesfor services furnished by any such system shall be fixed precedent to theissuance of the bonds. Such rates shall be sufficient to provide for thepayment of the interest upon and the principal of all such bonds as and whenthe same become due and payable, to create a bond and interest redemption fundtherefor, to provide for the payment of the expenses of administration andoperation and such expenses for maintenance of the system necessary to preservethe same in good repair and working order, to build up a reserve fordepreciation of the existing system, and to build up a reserve forimprovements, betterments and extensions to the existing system other thanthose necessary to maintain the same in good repair and working order ashereinbefore in this section provided. Such rates shall be fixed and revisedfrom time to time so as to produce these amounts, and the court in its orderauthorizing the issuance of said revenue bonds shall empower and direct thecommissioners of such power district to agree in and by the terms of saidrevenue bonds, and on the face of each bond at all times to maintain such ratesfor services furnished by such system as shall be sufficient to provide for theforegoing.

 

37-7-212. Authority of district court concerning bonds; bonds tocomply with federal laws; power system; state property.

 

Thedistrict court having jurisdiction over said power district shall have general,full, and complete authority to authorize the issuance of such revenue bonds,to make such order and decree from time to time as may be necessary to providefor the raising and accumulation of sufficient revenue and funds for thepayment of all principal and interest on said bonds, as same becomes due andpayable and after any order or decree shall have been made by any districtcourt of this state authorizing the issuance of any revenue bonds under thisact, such district court shall retain jurisdiction until all of said bonds andthe principal and interest thereon shall have been paid in full, to appoint a receiveron the application or petition of the owner or owners of said bonds or any ofthem, to collect the rates due said power district for services furnished andto conserve the same and apply the same to the payment of said bondedindebtedness, principal and interest, under the orders of such court; and inall such matters the court shall be deemed to have general jurisdiction to doany and all things necessary to carry out the intent and purpose of this actand to so provide that the principal and interest on bonds issued hereundershall be paid in full out of the revenue from the system or power plant orplants. It is the intent of this act, and there is hereby granted to thedistrict court such complete and full jurisdiction and powers over such proceedingsand bond issues that the district court in authorizing the issuance of any suchbonds may provide therein such terms and conditions as will fully comply withany federal law or laws of the United States of America relating thereto, andparticularly with the statute or statutes relating to public works so-calledand revenue bonds to be issued for such purposes as well as with any federallaw or laws appertaining to the reconstruction finance corporation and itspowers. Any such power system or plant, electric light plant, power plant,power lines, transmission lines, distributing system, or other property shallbe the property of the state of Wyoming and under its authority and control forthe benefit of the users of the electric power developed or distributedthereby.

 

ARTICLE 3 - BLACK HILLS JOINT POWER COMMISSION

 

37-7-301. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-302. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-303. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-304. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-305. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-306. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-307. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-308. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-309. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

37-7-310. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-311. Repealed By Laws 2008, Ch. 44, 2.

 

 

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Wyoming > Title37 > Chapter7

CHAPTER 7 - Power Districts

 

ARTICLE 1 - IN GENERAL

 

37-7-101. Formation; petition for organization.

 

 

(a) Whenever a majority of the freeholderson lands and entrymen upon public lands in any district who shall represent atleast one-third of the area of lands within said district which desire toprovide for the purchase of electric power for use in electrifying the landswithin said district or to purchase, extend, operate, or maintain consecutivepower lines; or to cooperate with the United States, the state of Wyoming, orany subdivision thereof, they shall procure a certificate of necessity from thepublic service commission of the state of Wyoming, and file in the districtcourt of the county which embraces the largest acreage of the district apetition hereinafter referred to as the "petition" which shallinclude:

 

(i) The name of the proposed power district;

 

(ii) The necessity of the proposed work, describing thenecessity and attaching such certificate of necessity issued by the publicservice commission thereto;

 

(iii) The object and purpose of the system to be constructedtogether with a general description thereof;

 

(iv) The names of all freeholders holding lands and the entrymenon public lands in said district when known;

 

(v) Whether or not the petitioners desire and propose tocooperate with the United States, the state of Wyoming or any subdivisionthereof;

 

(vi) A general prayer for the organization of the district.

 

(b) No petition having as many signers as are required by thissection shall be declared void, but the court may at any time permit thepetition to be amended in form and substance to conform to the facts, if thefacts justify the organization of the power district. Several similar petitionsfor the organization of the same district may be circulated, and when filed,shall together be regarded as one petition having as many signers as there areseparate signers on the several petitions filed. All petitions for theorganization of said district filed prior to the hearing on said petition shallbe considered by the court, the same as if filed with the first petition placedon file, and the signatures thereon contained shall be counted in determiningwhether sufficient persons have signed said petition.

 

37-7-102. Lands need not be contiguous; benefits to exceed damages andcosts; must be cheaper as single district.

 

Thelands proposed to be included in any power district need not be contiguous,provided that the benefits of the proposed work in each part will exceed thedamages from and costs of said proposed work in each part; and provided,further, that the court shall be satisfied that said proposed work can be morecheaply done if in a single district than otherwise.

 

37-7-103. Time and place of hearing on petition; notice.

 

Onsuch petition being filed the court or judge thereof shall make an order fixingthe time and place of the hearing thereon and ordering notice; thereupon theclerk of said county, for the county in which the proceedings are instituted,shall cause twenty (20) days notice of the filing of such petition to be given.

 

37-7-104. Contests and objections at hearing; notices of contest orobjection; court to hear and determine issues.

 

 

(a) On the day fixed for hearing on suchpetitions all persons owning or entitled to the possession of lands, or anyinterest or easement in land, within said proposed district, or who would beaffected thereby, may appear and contest or object to:

 

(i) The sufficiency of the petition;

 

(ii) The sufficiency of the signers of the petition;

 

(iii) The sufficiency of the notice;

 

(iv) The constitutionality of the law;

 

(v) The inclusion or exclusion of any lands in the district, orany other material issue raised by the petition;

 

(vi) The jurisdiction of the court, specifying their objectionsto such jurisdiction.

 

(b) The petitioners and contestants may, on the trial, offerany competent evidence in regard thereto. All notices of contest or objectionshall be in writing and shall clearly specify the grounds of contest orobjection and shall be filed in the office of the clerk of the court [prior] tothe date fixed for said hearing. The court shall on the day fixed for saidhearing, hear and determine all issues provided in this section and may adjournsaid hearing from time to time, for good and sufficient reasons shown.

 

37-7-105. Nonresident landowners to be specified on affidavit withpetition; notice by mail; personal service to establish jurisdiction.

 

Ifany of the persons owning or entitled to possession of land in said districtare nonresidents of the county or counties in which the proposed district lies,the petition shall be accompanied by an affidavit giving the names andpost-office address of each such nonresident, if such are known, and if unknownshall state that, upon diligent inquiry their names or post-office addresses(whichever may be the fact) cannot be ascertained. The clerk of the court shallmail a copy of the notice aforesaid to each of said nonresident owners whosepost-office address is known, within six (6) days after the first publicationof the same. The certificate of the clerk of the court, or other publicofficer, or the affidavit of any other person who knows the facts, affixed to acopy of said notice, shall be sufficient evidence of the posting, serving,mailing or publication thereof. Personal service of said notice on (or serviceby leaving at the last usual place of abode of) all persons owning or entitledto possession of lands or interest in lands within said district, shall givethe court complete jurisdiction, without posting, publication or mailing ofsaid notice.

 

37-7-106. Affidavit of signers evidence of facts therein.

 

Theaffidavit of any three (3) or more of the signers of said petition stating thatthey have examined it and are acquainted with the locality of said district andthat said petition is signed by a sufficient number of corporations and adultpersons owning lands in said district, to satisfy section 1 hereof, may betaken by the court or judge as sufficient evidence of the facts therein stated.

 

37-7-107. Transfer of lands to establish or defeat petition; filing ofpetition lis pendens against lands therein.

 

Alldeeds made for the purpose of establishing or defeating the prayer of saidpetition, and not made in good faith and for a valuable consideration, shall betaken and held to be a fraud, and the holders thereof shall not be consideredas the owners of the lands described therein; and the filing of said petitionshall constitute a lis pendens against all lands described therein, from andafter the filing thereof.

 

37-7-108. Petition dismissed for improper signatures; costs; court toinclude or exclude lands from district.

 

Ifthe court or presiding judge thereof, after hearing any and all competentevidence that may be offered for and against the said petition, shall find thatthe same has not been signed as herein required, the said petition shall bedismissed at the cost of the petitioners, and judgment shall be entered againstsaid petitioners for the amount of said costs. The court shall upon proper showinginclude or exclude any land from the district.

 

37-7-109. Order of court upon decision for petitioners; appointment ofcommissioners; findings and orders final unless appealed.

 

(a) If the issues at this hearing aredecided in favor of the petitioners, the court shall make an order:

 

(i) Approving and confirming the petition;

 

(ii) Defining the boundaries of the district;

 

(iii) Establishing said district as a corporation by the nameproposed with powers:

 

(A) To sue and be sued;

 

(B) To adopt and use a corporate seal;

 

(C) To have perpetual succession;

 

(D) To build or otherwise acquire power lines and thetransformers and other electrical equipment necessary to connect with powerlines of the United States, the state of Wyoming, or any subdivision thereof totransmit power to any and all persons deciding to use same;

 

(E) To exercise the power of eminent domain as provided by thelaws of the state of Wyoming.

 

(iv) Appointing three (3) commissioners from such districts whoshall be freeholders or entrymen upon public lands in said district.

 

(b) The commissioners appointed by the court shall at all timesbe under the direction of the court and may be removed from office by the courtupon good cause shown; provided, however, no commissioner shall be removeduntil written charges specifying the grounds upon which such removal is soughtare filed and an opportunity given such commissioner to be heard at a hearingprovided. In case a commissioner has been removed under this provision thecourt shall immediately appoint a successor.

 

(c) All findings and orders of the court made at the hearingherein provided for shall be final and conclusive unless appealed from to the supremecourt within thirty (30) days after filing thereof.

 

37-7-110. Oath and bond of commissioners; quorum; majority rule; termof office.

 

Beforeentering upon their duties, such commissioners shall take and subscribe an oathto support the constitution of the United States and the constitution of thestate of Wyoming, to faithfully and impartially discharge their duties as suchcommissioners and to render a true account of their doings to the court bywhich they are appointed whenever required by law or the order of the court,and shall execute a bond running to the clerk of said court and his successorsin office as obligees, to be filed with said clerk for the benefit of theparties interested, in an amount to be fixed by the court or presiding judge,and with sureties to be approved by the court or presiding judge, conditionedfor the faithful discharge of their duties as such commissioners and thefaithful accounting of all moneys which shall come into their hands as suchcommissioners. A majority shall constitute a quorum and a concurrence of amajority in any matter within their duties shall be sufficient to itsdetermination. The commissioners appointed shall hold their office until thefirst Tuesday in the second succeeding December following the date of orderorganizing such district and until their respective successors are qualified.

 

37-7-111. Records of commissioners; annual statement; compensation andexpenses; suit upon bonds.

 

Thecommissioners shall keep an accurate record of all moneys collected on accountof the work under their charge and of all payments made by them and shall takevouchers of such payments and shall keep full, accurate and true minutes of alltheir proceedings. On the first day of November each year they shall file inthe office of the clerk of the court having jurisdiction in the matter anitemized statement of all their receipts and disbursements, and leave saidreport in such office for examination by parties interested at all times; andinclude a copy thereof in the regular call for the annual meeting hereinafterprovided. They shall receive for their services such compensation as the courtor presiding judge thereof may determine. They shall also be reimbursed fortheir actual reasonable expenses. Suit may also be brought upon their bonds,and the amount recovered shall be applied to the construction of the work or tothe party injured, as justice may require.

 

37-7-112. Commissioners to constitute corporate authority;organization; powers of board.

 

Thecommissioners appointed as aforesaid and their successors in office shall, fromthe entry of such order of confirmation constitute the corporate authority ofsaid power district, and shall exercise the power conferred on them by law.They shall organize a board, elect a president from their number and appoint asecretary-treasurer. The board shall have power, and it shall be their duty toadopt bylaws, manage and conduct the affairs and business of the district, makeand execute all necessary contracts, employ such agents, attorneys, officersand employees as may be required and prescribe their duties; to purchaseelectric current for light, heat and power purposes; to purchase, construct orotherwise acquire, power lines, transformers and other electrical equipmentnecessary to conduct and transmit such electric current to various people ofthe district who desire to use such electric current.

 

37-7-113. Duties of commissioners as to proposed work; report tocourt.

 

 

(a) As soon as may be after the organizationof said district or within such time as the court may direct, saidcommissioners shall proceed to have all necessary surveys made and shall lay outsaid proposed work making a map thereof, and plans and other specificationsthereof, and report in writing to the court:

 

(i) The extent and character of the proposed work;

 

(ii) If it be found necessary to change the boundaries of thesaid proposed district, previously fixed, they shall report said proposedchange, and, if possible, shall report the names, the residence and post-officeaddresses of the owners or persons entitled to possession of all lands affectedby said change in boundaries, but no such change in boundaries, shall be madeas to deprive the court of jurisdiction; provided, however, that if the ownersand those entitled to possession, by virtue of public land filing, of landsadjacent to the district, petition to have their lands brought into thedistrict, such petitioners may be considered the same as the originalpetitioners in making changes of boundaries;

 

(iii) What lands within the district, as by them reported, willbe injured by the proposed work, if any, and they shall therein award to eachtract, lot, easement or interest by whomsoever held the amount of damages whichthey shall determine will be caused to the same by the proposed work;

 

(iv) All lands within the district as by them reported will bebenefited by the proposed work and they shall assess against such lands bywhomsoever held the amount of benefits which they determine will be caused tothe same by the proposed work. The benefits so assessed are herein referred toas "the assessment roll";

 

(v) They shall also determine and report to the court the totalitemized amount as near as they can determine, that said proposed work willcost, including organization expenses and the unit cost upon which theassessments are based, which shall be designated as "cost ofconstruction";

 

(vi) The cost of construction which shall be assessed to thevarious tracts of land within said district in proportion to the assessedvaluation of each of such tracts of land as such valuation was last fixed anddetermined by the county assessor and county board of equalization of thecounty in which said lands are situated.

 

37-7-114. Notice and hearing on report of commissioners.

 

Uponthe filing of said report, the court or judge thereof shall make and enter anorder fixing the time and place when and where all persons interested mayappear and remonstrate against the confirmation thereof, and the clerk of saidcourt shall cause notice of the time and place of such hearing to be given toall parties interested which notice shall contain a brief description of thelands benefited and damaged, together with the net damage awarded the severaltracts, parcels, easements and corporations to which damages are awarded, andthe sum in each case assessed for benefits, and cost of construction againstsaid several benefited parcels, tracts, easements and corporations, and thebenefits apportioned to each parcel, tract, easement or corporation in thedistrict. Said notice shall be published at least three (3) successive weeks,prior to the day set for the hearing in one newspaper published in each countyin which said lands, or any part thereof within said district are situate (andif no newspaper is published in said county, in some newspaper in an adjoiningcounty), and by serving a copy of such notice on each of the persons, orcorporations, by said report recommended, to be assessed, or whose lands are bysaid report recommended to be included in said district and who resides in anyof the counties in which any lands of the proposed district are situated, atleast twelve (12) days before the day of hearing in the same manner that asummons is required to be served; provided, absence from the county of suchperson or corporation shall excuse personal service, whereupon due publicationof such notice shall be sufficient service.

 

37-7-115. Notice when lands situate in more than one county.

 

Incase the lands are situated in more than one county the notice published in thecounty wherein the court having jurisdiction is situated shall contain adescription of all the lands in said proposed district [with] the damagesawarded to the several parcels thereof, but the notice published in any othercounty or counties may contain a description of only the lands situate in saidcounty for which said publication is made, together with the damages awarded toand assessments for benefits against the several tracts, parcels, easements andinterests situate in said county for which publication is made. In case ofservice of said notice personally, or the acceptance and waiver thereof of allthe owners of the lands within the district, said service shall be sufficientand give the court jurisdiction without said publication.

 

37-7-116. Modification of report by order of court.

 

Ifthe court finds that the report requires modification, the same may by order ofthe court be referred back to the commissioners, who may be required to modifyit in any respect.

 

37-7-117. Order of confirmation of report or modified report; effectof confirmation; appeal.

 

Ifthere be no remonstrance, or if the finding be in favor of the validity of theproceedings, or after the report shall have been modified to conform to thefindings, the court shall confirm the report and the order of confirmationshall be final and conclusive, the proposed work shall be established andauthorized, and the proposed assessments approved and confirmed unless withinthirty (30) days an appeal be taken to the supreme court, and the said order ofconfirmation shall also fix the commissioner's bond.

 

37-7-118. Petitions regarding orders of confirmation; supplementalreport from commissioners.

 

Saidorder of confirmation may, at the same or at any subsequent term of said courtbe revised, modified or changed, in whole or in part, on petition of thecommissioners, after such notice as the court may require to partiesinterested. At any time prior to making the order confirming said report orthereafter, the court may permit the commissioners to present and file asupplemental report, or amend their report, as to any matter which, pursuant tothe provisions hereof, was or might have been included in the original reportpresented by them, and after reasonable notice given to all parties interested,in such manner as the court shall direct, the court may, upon the hearing insaid matter make such order as the case may require.

 

37-7-119. Assessment for construction; time of payment; interest.

 

Atthe time of the confirmation of such assessments, it shall be competent for thecourt to order the assessment for construction to be paid in not more thantwenty (20) installments, of such amounts and at such times as will beconvenient for the accomplishment of the proposed work, or for the payment ofprincipal and interest of such notes or bonds of said district, as the courtshall grant authority to issue for the construction of said work. The court mayalso, by such order, fix a date on which the first installment of theassessments of construction shall become due, not more than five (5) yearsafter the date of the order, and each of said installments shall draw interestat a rate not to exceed seven percent (7%) per annum from the date of saidorder.

 

37-7-120. Assessments due at same time as taxes; budget to be filedand approved by court; expenditures in excess of budget; unauthorized debtsvoid.

 

(a) Assessments to meet expenses of any currentyear of any district shall become due, payable and delinquent at such time ortimes each year as may be fixed by law for state and county taxes to becomedue, payable and delinquent. Commissioners having charge of any power districtshall on or before the first Tuesday of June of each year file with the clerkof the court having jurisdiction of such district, a report showing an itemizedestimate of the money to be raised by assessment within the district for thepurpose of constructing new work, maintenance, and to meet the yearly currentexpenses of the district. In addition to the amount above provided, thecommissioners may add a sum which in their judgment shall be sufficient toprovide for possible delinquencies. Within thirty (30) days after filing suchannual report, at a time and place to be fixed by the court or a judge thereof,the judge shall examine such report, hear all objections thereto, fix anddetermine the amount to be raised by assessments for the current year and causesuch adjudication to be entered of record in said court and a certified copythereof to be delivered to the commissioners of such district. Thecommissioners shall add thereto such amount as may be necessary to meet theprincipal and interest on lawful indebtedness of the district maturing duringthe current year, together with a sum which in their judgment shall besufficient to provide for possible delinquencies. When thus completed it shallbe known as "The Budget of .... District for the year (year)" andalso be verified under oath by any one of the commissioners.

 

(b) The commissioners of any power district within the state ofWyoming are hereby forbidden to incur any indebtedness for the current expensesof the district in excess of the amount provided in the budget. Provided,however, in case a greater sum than that provided in the budget is required,the commissioners may file a petition setting forth the causes therefor, withthe clerk of the court having jurisdiction of said district. Immediately uponthe filing of said petition the court shall make an order fixing the time andplace of hearing and directing the form and manner of notice thereof to begiven if the court deem such hearing advisable. If the court shall authorizethe expenditure of a greater sum of money the commissioners shall be authorizedto incur indebtedness equal to the amount of the additional sum authorized bythe court, and in case the expenditure occurs at a time when it is too late toplace the amount upon the assessment roll for the current year such amounts maybe added to the budget of ensuing years. All debts contracted in contraventionof this section shall be void.

 

37-7-121. Preparation of assessment roll; assessments based on countyassessments; commissioners to verify; levy of assessments; assessments toextend to tax roll.

 

Itshall be the duty of the commissioners of each power district on or before thethird Monday in July in each year to prepare an assessment roll of saiddistrict which shall contain the name of the owner together with thedescription of each lot, tract and easement of land within said district andthe aggregate assessment of benefits confirmed by the court against the same.Assessments to meet the current expense of a power district for any year shallbe proportioned upon the assessed valuation of the several benefited lots,tracts and easements in the district as such valuation was last fixed forassessment purposes by the county assessor and county board of equalization ofthe county in which the same are situated. The assessment roll shall also showthe amount assessed against each lot, tract, and easement of land in thedistrict to meet the principal and interest or the indebtedness of the districtfor the current year. When such assessment roll is completed it shall be signedby the commissioners of said district and verified by any one of them. Thecounty commissioners of said county upon the receipt of the assessment roll ofsaid district and at the time of making the requisite tax levy for county purposes,shall levy and assess against each lot, tract, and easement of land therespective amounts levied and assessed against the same on said assessmentroll. Thereupon the county commissioners shall certify to and deliver saidassessment roll to the county assessor of such county and in case the territoryembraced in such district is located in two (2) or more counties a copy of theassessment roll as certified to by the county commissioners of the countyhaving jurisdiction of such district shall be delivered to the assessor of eachcounty in which any of the land of the district is located. Upon receipt of theassessment roll the assessors of the counties embracing any of the lands ofsuch district, shall extend upon the tax roll of such county the respectiveamounts levied and assessed against each lot, tract, and easement of land, andagainst each corporation as shown by said assessment roll of said district.

 

37-7-122. County treasurer to collect taxes; interest coupons or bondsof district authorized for payment of district bond taxes; duty of countycommissioners as to unpaid taxes.

 

Itshall be the duty of the county treasurer of each county in which any powerdistrict is located in whole or in part to collect and receipt for all taxeslevied as herein provided in the same manner as is required in the receipt forand collection of taxes upon real estate for county purposes. The countytreasurer in case of taxes heretofore or hereafter levied as herein providedshall receive in payment of the district bond taxes above mentioned for theyear in which said taxes were levied, interest coupons or bonds of said powerdistricts maturing within said year the same as so much lawful money in theUnited States. Provided, however, that in the case of the nonpayment of anytaxes which have heretofore or may hereafter be levied as above provided, theboard of county commissioners upon application made shall have the power and itshall be their duty, upon written request of the board of such power district,to order the said treasurer to receive in full payment of the bond fund portionof said taxes the principal amount of said taxes levied, payable in bonds orbond interest coupons of said power district at their face value, and maturingwithin the year in which said tax levies were made, as so much lawful money ofthe United States.

 

37-7-123. Inspection and repair of power lines.

 

Thecommissioners and agents, servants and employees shall have the right to goupon all lands along any power line to inspect and repair the same whenevernecessary, doing no unnecessary damage, and shall not be liable for trespasstherefor.

 

37-7-124. Necessary additional assessments authorized under courtorder; notice required; payment.

 

Ifany assessment for construction, operation, maintenance or repair that thecommissioners shall have reported to the court is a smaller sum than is neededto carry out the purpose for which said assessment has been made or if in anyyear an additional sum is necessary to pay the interest on lawful indebtednessof said power districts, further or additional assessments on the landsbenefited shall be made by the commissioners of said power district under theorder of the court or presiding judge thereof, upon such notice as the court orjudge may direct, which further or additional assessment may be made payable ininstallments as specified herein and shall be treated and collected in the samemanner as the original assessments confirmed by the court in said powerdistrict.

 

37-7-125. Omission of assessments not to affect jurisdiction of courtor render previous assessments voidable; commissioners to correct omissions andreport to court.

 

Omissionto assess benefits, or to assess for construction, or to make additionalassessment or to make assessment for operation, maintenance or repairs againstany land or person which should have been assessed, or to award damages to anyone or more tracts of land or assessments in a power district shall neitheraffect the jurisdiction of the court to confirm the report, nor to render thebenefits assessed or the assessments for construction, or additionalassessments, or assessments for operation, maintenance, or repairs againstother lands or assessments against any person voidable, but the commissionersof said power district shall thereafter, as soon as they discover the omissionor receive notice thereof, either agree with the omitted parties upon theproper award or assessments and award the damages or make such assessments ofbenefits or assessments for construction, operation, maintenance or repair, andmake such additional assessments against the omitted lands and corporations andaward such damages as shall be just, and report the facts, together with suchassessments and awards, to the court.

 

37-7-126. Commissioners may borrow for unpaid construction or lawfuldebts; issuance of notes or bonds; interest specified.

 

Thecommissioners may borrow money, not exceeding the amount of "assessmentfor construction" as herein provided, unpaid at the time of borrowing forsuch purposes, or for the payment of any indebtedness that may have beenlawfully incurred, and may secure the same by notes or bonds bearing interestat a rate not to exceed seven percent (7%) per annum and not running beyond one(1) year after the last installment of the assessment, on the account of whichthe money is borrowed, shall fall due, which said notes or bonds shall not besold at less than ninety percent (90%) of their face value, which said bondsshall be transferable by delivery to the same extent as negotiable paper of thehighest character; and may deliver notes or bonds to the United States to beheld and when deemed desirable or when the appraised value of the land in thedistrict is double the bonded indebtedness, sold by it, and the net proceedsreceived from the notes or bonds applied to the liquidation of contractindebtedness of the district, and said notes or bonds shall be in such form,terms and denominations as may be fixed by the court, but which notes or bondsshall not be held to make the commissioners personally liable, but shallconstitute a lien upon the assessments for the repayment of the principal andinterest of such notes or bonds. In case any moneys derived from bonds sold topay for the construction, as herein provided, now or hereafter, remains on handafter such work is completed and paid for, and not raised for damages unpaidfor, such residue may be used in the maintenance and repair, as in this chapterprovided, before making assessment for such maintenance and repair.

 

37-7-127. Refunding of indebtedness.

 

Thecourt, may, upon the petition of the commissioners authorize them to refund anylawful indebtedness of the district now existing or which may hereafter beincurred by taking up and canceling all or any part of its outstanding notesand bonds, as fast as they come due or before, if the holders thereof willsurrender the same and issue in lieu thereof new notes or bonds of suchdistrict, payable in such longer time as the court shall deem proper, in anamount sufficient to retire notes and bonds of the district then outstandingand the unpaid accrued interest thereon, together with such an amount as thecommissioners of such district may deem necessary to provide for possiblefuture defaults and delinquencies in the payment of assessments, and bearinginterest not exceeding seven percent (7%) per annum. For the purpose ofproviding funds to pay such refunding bonds with interest thereon, thecommissioners may levy assessments against the land in such district, but notin excess of the benefits assessed. In the alternative the commissioners may,if they deem it advisable, issue said refunding bonds in an amount sufficientonly to retire all notes and bonds of the district then outstanding and theunpaid accrued interest thereon, and delinquencies in the payment ofassessments levied, from year to year, assessments against the land in suchdistrict for such purposes, but not in excess of the benefits assessed againstthe same.

 

37-7-128. Construction to be done by lowest responsible bidder;advertisement for bids; applicability of section.

 

Inall cases where the work to be done at any one time under the directions of thecommissioners will, in their opinion, cost to exceed twenty-five hundreddollars ($2,500.00), the same shall be let to the lowest responsible bidder,and the commissioners shall advertise for sealed bids, by notice published insome newspaper published in the county in which the petition is filed, and mayadvertise in one (1) or more newspapers published elsewhere. If there be nonewspaper published in the county in which the petition is filed, they shalladvertise in some newspaper published in an adjoining county, which said noticeshall particularly set forth the time and place when and where the bidsadvertised will be opened, the kind of work to be let and the terms of payment.Said commissioners may continue the letting from time to time, if in theirjudgment the same shall be necessary, and shall reserve the right to reject anyand all bids. This section shall not be construed to apply to the employment ofsuperintendent, engineer, attorney or other employee engaged in the generalwork of the district.

 

37-7-129. Payment, tender or deposit of damages required before startof construction; exception.

 

Thedamages allowed to the owners of lands shall be paid or tendered before thecommissioners shall be authorized to enter upon the lands for damage to whichthe award is made, for the construction of any power line or other workproposed thereon. If the owner is unknown or there shall be a contest in regardto the ownership of the lands, or the owner will not receive payment, or thereexists a mortgage or other lien against the same, or the commissioners cannotfor any other reason pay him, they may deposit the said damages with the clerkof the court, for the benefit of the owner, or parties interested, to be paidor distributed as the court shall direct, and such payment shall have the sameeffect as the tender to and acceptance of the damages awarded by the trueowners of the land. This section shall not, however, prevent saidcommissioners, their agents, servants and employees, going upon said lands todo any and all work found necessary prior to making their assessment ofbenefits and award of damages, and the trial on their report thereof.

 

37-7-130. Assessments as lien against property.

 

Eachand every sum assessed in any power district organized in the manner hereinprovided, as soon as such assessment is confirmed by the court, shall be and isdeclared to be a lien against the land so assessed, and unless some othermethod of collection is herein provided, it shall be collected in the samemanner as any other money judgment, provided that whenever said assessment is alien upon land it shall only be collected on said land on which it is a lien.

 

37-7-131. Bonds not adversely affected by change in assessment.

 

Nobonds or other money obligations issued by any power district shall beadversely affected by any subsequent change in assessment of benefits.

 

37-7-132. Commissioners declared public officers; acts presumedregular and valid; burden of proof on contestant.

 

Commissionersof power districts are hereby declared to be public officers. The presumptionshall be in favor of the regularity and validity of all their official acts.Whenever any report of the commissioners of any power district or any part ofany such report is contested, remonstrated against or called in question, theburden of proof shall rest upon the contestant, remonstrant or questioner.

 

37-7-133. Order confirming assessments as evidence of regularity.

 

Theorder confirming the assessments of benefits shall be conclusive as to theregularity of all proceedings relating to the assessments of benefits unlessappealed from within thirty (30) days after the entry of such order.

 

37-7-134. Election of commissioners; date; term of office.

 

Uponthe third Tuesday in November next preceding the expiration of terms of officeof any power district commissioners appointed in any power district organizedunder the provisions of this chapter, there shall be elected three (3)commissioners for such power district, one (1) for the term of one (1) year,one (1) for the term of two (2) years, and one (1) for the term of three (3)years, and upon the third Tuesday in November of each year thereafter anelection shall be held to elect a commissioner to succeed the outgoingcommissioner whose term of office shall be for a period of three (3) years.

 

37-7-135. Election of commissioners; hour and place; notice; votersqualified; conduct; proxies; record required.

 

Thecommissioners of the district shall fix the hour and place within theboundaries of the district of each election and preside at the same. It shallbe the duty of the commissioners at least twenty (20) days prior to the date ofthe election to mail to each person entitled to vote at his or her last knownplace of residence or business, a notice stating the time, place and purpose ofsuch election. Every person owning or entitled by virtue of public land filingto the possession of land situated within and being a part of any district, inwhich an election is to be held, shall be entitled to cast one (1) vote forevery one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) of assessed valuation of real propertyowned by him or her within said power district, or the major portion thereof,providing, that each person owning lands or entitled by virtue of public landfiling to possession of land within said district shall be entitled to at leastone (1) vote. At the hour and place of such election the commissioners shallcall the roll of those entitled to vote and the number of votes each isentitled to. They shall make a record of the qualified voters present, receiveall proxies, and prescribe the manner of canvassing votes. All proxies shall bein writing and signed by the person entitled to vote.

 

37-7-136. Election of commissioners; votes necessary to elect; fillingof vacancies; qualifications and duties of commissioners elected.

 

Noperson shall be elected as commissioner who shall not have received a majorityof all votes cast. No election shall be invalid by reason of the fact that amajority of the assessed valuation of real estate within the district was notrepresented at such election. Whenever the office of any elected commissionershall become vacant by reason of death, resignation or other cause, the vacancyshall be filled by the surviving commissioners for the unexpired term. In casesuch vacancy is not filled within thirty (30) days the court shall fill suchvacancy. All elected commissioners shall have the same qualifications andduties as herein prescribed for appointed commissioners.

 

ARTICLE 2 - REVENUE BOND POWER DISTRICTS

 

37-7-201. Petition for organization; assessments against real estate.

 

Ifthe petition for the organization of a power district under W.S. 37-7-101,states that the bonds to be issued by such district for the purpose of raisingmoney shall be a lien only upon the power plant, distribution system, and otherproperty used in the manufacture or distribution of electrical energy, and uponthe revenues from electrical energy so developed or distributed, the petitionor petitions of fifty (50) freeholders of the area to be served shall besufficient to give the court jurisdiction to hear such petition, and toorganize a power district; provided, no district organized under a petitionproviding such revenue bonds only, shall have authority to make any assessmentsagainst the real estate of the district, unless it shall amend its petition andfollow the procedure provided in W.S. 37-7-101.

 

37-7-202. Bonds issued only when authorized by district court; hearingand notice; interest rate; conditions of sale.

 

Powerdistricts organized pursuant to petitions stating that the bonds to be issuedby the district for the purpose of raising money shall be a lien only upon thepower plant, distribution system and other property used in the manufacture ordistribution of electrical energy, and upon the revenues from electrical energyso developed or distributed, may issue bonds only when so authorized by the districtcourt having jurisdiction thereof, and the bonds shall not be offered for saleto the public generally unless the court shall so provide in its order.Commissioners of a district desiring to issue bonds, shall first present to thecourt a full showing of the necessity and proposed conditions of the bonds,and, after giving such notice as the court may require to all partiesinterested, the court shall hear the petition and make orders fixing the termsand conditions of bond issue as shall to the court seem proper. Bonds shall notbe sold at less than ninety percent (90%) of their par value.

 

37-7-203. W.S. 37-7-201 through 37-7-212 to be cumulative authority;existing laws not repealed.

 

Thisact shall be construed as cumulative authority for the purposes named insections 1 and 2 hereof, and as to the manner and form of issuing revenue bondsfor any such purpose or purposes, and shall not be construed to repeal anyexisting laws with respect thereto, it being the purpose and intention of thisact to create an additional and alternate method for the purposes herein named.

 

37-7-204. Payment of principal and interest to be from revenues only;not to constitute indebtedness of borrower.

 

Theprincipal of and interest upon such bonds shall be payable solely from therevenues derived from the operation of the power system or plant, electriclight plant, power plant, power lines, transmission lines, or powerdistributing systems, for the purchase, construction, improvement, enlargement,extension, or repair of which the same are issued. No bond or coupon issuedpursuant to this act shall constitute an indebtedness of such borrower withinthe meaning of any state constitutional provision or statutory limitation. Itshall be plainly stated on the face of each such bond and coupon that the samehas been issued under the provisions of this act and that it does notconstitute an indebtedness of such borrower within any state constitutionalprovision or statutory limitation.

 

37-7-205. Bonds a mortgage lien for benefit of bond and couponholders.

 

Saidbonds shall be construed to and shall create a statutory mortgage lien upon anysuch power system, power plant, electric light plant, power lines, transmissionlines, or power distributing system or systems, and the appurtenances andextensions thereto so to be purchased, constructed, improved, enlarged,extended or repaired, to and in favor of the holders of said bonds and each ofthem and to and in favor of the holders of the coupons of said bonds, and eachof them.

 

37-7-206. System to remain subject to mortgage lien; proceedings tocompel performance of official duties; forced sale not authorized.

 

Suchsystem so purchased, constructed, improved, enlarged, extended or repairedshall remain subject to said statutory mortgage lien until payment in full ofthe principal of and interest upon said bonds. Any holder of any of said bondsor of any of the coupons representing interest accrued thereon, may, either atlaw or in equity, by suit, action, mandamus, or other proceedings, protect andenforce said statutory mortgage lien, and may, by suit, action, mandamus, orother proceedings, enforce and compel performance of all duties of theofficials of the borrower, including the fixing of sufficient rates, thecollection of revenues, the proper segregation of the revenues of the system,and the proper application thereof. Provided, however, that said statutorymortgage lien shall not be construed to give any such bond or coupon holderauthority to compel the sale of such system or any part thereof.

 

37-7-207. Appointment of receiver in case of default upon bonds.

 

Ifthere be any default in the payment of the principal of or interest upon any ofsaid bonds, any court having jurisdiction in any proper action may appoint a receiverto administer and operate the system so encumbered on behalf of the borrowerwith power to fix and charge rates and collect revenues sufficient to providefor the payment of any bonds or other obligations outstanding against saidsystem and for the payment of the expenses of operating and maintaining thesame and to apply the income and revenues of said system in conformity withthis act and the order providing for the issuance of such bonds.

 

37-7-208. Bonds and coupons held by governmental agencies exempt fromtaxes.

 

Thebonds and interest coupons issued hereunder are hereby exempted from any andall state, county, municipal and other taxation whatsoever under the laws ofthe state of Wyoming, and it shall be plainly stated on the face of each suchbond as follows: "The principal of and interest on this bond are exemptedfrom any and all state, county and municipal and other taxation whatsoeverunder the laws of the state of Wyoming, provided, however, that this exemptionshall apply only to such bonds and coupons owned and held by the public worksadministration or other governmental agencies."

 

37-7-209. Bonds negotiable instruments.

 

Suchbonds shall have all the qualities of negotiable instruments under the lawmerchant and the Negotiable Instruments Law.

 

37-7-210. Disposition of proceeds from sale of bonds; funds to be usedonly on system; unexpended balance; purchase and cancellation of bonds.

 

Thecommissioners of any such power district shall require that the proceeds of thesale of bonds issued under the provisions of this act be deposited in a specialaccount or accounts in a bank or banks which are members of the federal reservesystem, and shall require, insofar as practicable, that each such deposit besecured by the United States government securities having an aggregate marketvalue at least equal to the sum at the time on deposit, or, in any event, theproceeds shall be deposited in some bank or other depository, either within orwithout the state, which will secure such deposit satisfactorily to saidgoverning body. All moneys received from any such bonds shall be used solelyfor the purchase, construction, improvement, enlargement, extension or repair ofthe system for which issued, including any engineering, legal and otherexpenses incident thereto; provided, however, that such moneys may be used alsoto advance the payment of the interest on such bonds during the first three (3)years following the date of such bonds. Provided, that any unexpended balanceof the proceeds of the sale of any such bonds remaining after the completion ofthe project for which issued shall be paid immediately into the bond andinterest redemption fund for such bonds, and the same shall be used only forthe payment of the principal of the bonds, and interest for the first three (3)years following the date of the bonds, or, in the alternative, to acquireoutstanding bonds of the general issue from which the proceeds were derived, bypurchase of such bonds at a price (exclusive of accrued interest) not exceedingthe face amount thereof. Any bonds so acquired by purchase shall be cancelledand shall not be reissued.

 

37-7-211. Rates for services.

 

Ratesfor services furnished by any such system shall be fixed precedent to theissuance of the bonds. Such rates shall be sufficient to provide for thepayment of the interest upon and the principal of all such bonds as and whenthe same become due and payable, to create a bond and interest redemption fundtherefor, to provide for the payment of the expenses of administration andoperation and such expenses for maintenance of the system necessary to preservethe same in good repair and working order, to build up a reserve fordepreciation of the existing system, and to build up a reserve forimprovements, betterments and extensions to the existing system other thanthose necessary to maintain the same in good repair and working order ashereinbefore in this section provided. Such rates shall be fixed and revisedfrom time to time so as to produce these amounts, and the court in its orderauthorizing the issuance of said revenue bonds shall empower and direct thecommissioners of such power district to agree in and by the terms of saidrevenue bonds, and on the face of each bond at all times to maintain such ratesfor services furnished by such system as shall be sufficient to provide for theforegoing.

 

37-7-212. Authority of district court concerning bonds; bonds tocomply with federal laws; power system; state property.

 

Thedistrict court having jurisdiction over said power district shall have general,full, and complete authority to authorize the issuance of such revenue bonds,to make such order and decree from time to time as may be necessary to providefor the raising and accumulation of sufficient revenue and funds for thepayment of all principal and interest on said bonds, as same becomes due andpayable and after any order or decree shall have been made by any districtcourt of this state authorizing the issuance of any revenue bonds under thisact, such district court shall retain jurisdiction until all of said bonds andthe principal and interest thereon shall have been paid in full, to appoint a receiveron the application or petition of the owner or owners of said bonds or any ofthem, to collect the rates due said power district for services furnished andto conserve the same and apply the same to the payment of said bondedindebtedness, principal and interest, under the orders of such court; and inall such matters the court shall be deemed to have general jurisdiction to doany and all things necessary to carry out the intent and purpose of this actand to so provide that the principal and interest on bonds issued hereundershall be paid in full out of the revenue from the system or power plant orplants. It is the intent of this act, and there is hereby granted to thedistrict court such complete and full jurisdiction and powers over such proceedingsand bond issues that the district court in authorizing the issuance of any suchbonds may provide therein such terms and conditions as will fully comply withany federal law or laws of the United States of America relating thereto, andparticularly with the statute or statutes relating to public works so-calledand revenue bonds to be issued for such purposes as well as with any federallaw or laws appertaining to the reconstruction finance corporation and itspowers. Any such power system or plant, electric light plant, power plant,power lines, transmission lines, distributing system, or other property shallbe the property of the state of Wyoming and under its authority and control forthe benefit of the users of the electric power developed or distributedthereby.

 

ARTICLE 3 - BLACK HILLS JOINT POWER COMMISSION

 

37-7-301. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-302. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-303. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-304. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-305. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-306. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-307. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-308. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-309. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

37-7-310. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-311. Repealed By Laws 2008, Ch. 44, 2.

 

 


State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Wyoming > Title37 > Chapter7

CHAPTER 7 - Power Districts

 

ARTICLE 1 - IN GENERAL

 

37-7-101. Formation; petition for organization.

 

 

(a) Whenever a majority of the freeholderson lands and entrymen upon public lands in any district who shall represent atleast one-third of the area of lands within said district which desire toprovide for the purchase of electric power for use in electrifying the landswithin said district or to purchase, extend, operate, or maintain consecutivepower lines; or to cooperate with the United States, the state of Wyoming, orany subdivision thereof, they shall procure a certificate of necessity from thepublic service commission of the state of Wyoming, and file in the districtcourt of the county which embraces the largest acreage of the district apetition hereinafter referred to as the "petition" which shallinclude:

 

(i) The name of the proposed power district;

 

(ii) The necessity of the proposed work, describing thenecessity and attaching such certificate of necessity issued by the publicservice commission thereto;

 

(iii) The object and purpose of the system to be constructedtogether with a general description thereof;

 

(iv) The names of all freeholders holding lands and the entrymenon public lands in said district when known;

 

(v) Whether or not the petitioners desire and propose tocooperate with the United States, the state of Wyoming or any subdivisionthereof;

 

(vi) A general prayer for the organization of the district.

 

(b) No petition having as many signers as are required by thissection shall be declared void, but the court may at any time permit thepetition to be amended in form and substance to conform to the facts, if thefacts justify the organization of the power district. Several similar petitionsfor the organization of the same district may be circulated, and when filed,shall together be regarded as one petition having as many signers as there areseparate signers on the several petitions filed. All petitions for theorganization of said district filed prior to the hearing on said petition shallbe considered by the court, the same as if filed with the first petition placedon file, and the signatures thereon contained shall be counted in determiningwhether sufficient persons have signed said petition.

 

37-7-102. Lands need not be contiguous; benefits to exceed damages andcosts; must be cheaper as single district.

 

Thelands proposed to be included in any power district need not be contiguous,provided that the benefits of the proposed work in each part will exceed thedamages from and costs of said proposed work in each part; and provided,further, that the court shall be satisfied that said proposed work can be morecheaply done if in a single district than otherwise.

 

37-7-103. Time and place of hearing on petition; notice.

 

Onsuch petition being filed the court or judge thereof shall make an order fixingthe time and place of the hearing thereon and ordering notice; thereupon theclerk of said county, for the county in which the proceedings are instituted,shall cause twenty (20) days notice of the filing of such petition to be given.

 

37-7-104. Contests and objections at hearing; notices of contest orobjection; court to hear and determine issues.

 

 

(a) On the day fixed for hearing on suchpetitions all persons owning or entitled to the possession of lands, or anyinterest or easement in land, within said proposed district, or who would beaffected thereby, may appear and contest or object to:

 

(i) The sufficiency of the petition;

 

(ii) The sufficiency of the signers of the petition;

 

(iii) The sufficiency of the notice;

 

(iv) The constitutionality of the law;

 

(v) The inclusion or exclusion of any lands in the district, orany other material issue raised by the petition;

 

(vi) The jurisdiction of the court, specifying their objectionsto such jurisdiction.

 

(b) The petitioners and contestants may, on the trial, offerany competent evidence in regard thereto. All notices of contest or objectionshall be in writing and shall clearly specify the grounds of contest orobjection and shall be filed in the office of the clerk of the court [prior] tothe date fixed for said hearing. The court shall on the day fixed for saidhearing, hear and determine all issues provided in this section and may adjournsaid hearing from time to time, for good and sufficient reasons shown.

 

37-7-105. Nonresident landowners to be specified on affidavit withpetition; notice by mail; personal service to establish jurisdiction.

 

Ifany of the persons owning or entitled to possession of land in said districtare nonresidents of the county or counties in which the proposed district lies,the petition shall be accompanied by an affidavit giving the names andpost-office address of each such nonresident, if such are known, and if unknownshall state that, upon diligent inquiry their names or post-office addresses(whichever may be the fact) cannot be ascertained. The clerk of the court shallmail a copy of the notice aforesaid to each of said nonresident owners whosepost-office address is known, within six (6) days after the first publicationof the same. The certificate of the clerk of the court, or other publicofficer, or the affidavit of any other person who knows the facts, affixed to acopy of said notice, shall be sufficient evidence of the posting, serving,mailing or publication thereof. Personal service of said notice on (or serviceby leaving at the last usual place of abode of) all persons owning or entitledto possession of lands or interest in lands within said district, shall givethe court complete jurisdiction, without posting, publication or mailing ofsaid notice.

 

37-7-106. Affidavit of signers evidence of facts therein.

 

Theaffidavit of any three (3) or more of the signers of said petition stating thatthey have examined it and are acquainted with the locality of said district andthat said petition is signed by a sufficient number of corporations and adultpersons owning lands in said district, to satisfy section 1 hereof, may betaken by the court or judge as sufficient evidence of the facts therein stated.

 

37-7-107. Transfer of lands to establish or defeat petition; filing ofpetition lis pendens against lands therein.

 

Alldeeds made for the purpose of establishing or defeating the prayer of saidpetition, and not made in good faith and for a valuable consideration, shall betaken and held to be a fraud, and the holders thereof shall not be consideredas the owners of the lands described therein; and the filing of said petitionshall constitute a lis pendens against all lands described therein, from andafter the filing thereof.

 

37-7-108. Petition dismissed for improper signatures; costs; court toinclude or exclude lands from district.

 

Ifthe court or presiding judge thereof, after hearing any and all competentevidence that may be offered for and against the said petition, shall find thatthe same has not been signed as herein required, the said petition shall bedismissed at the cost of the petitioners, and judgment shall be entered againstsaid petitioners for the amount of said costs. The court shall upon proper showinginclude or exclude any land from the district.

 

37-7-109. Order of court upon decision for petitioners; appointment ofcommissioners; findings and orders final unless appealed.

 

(a) If the issues at this hearing aredecided in favor of the petitioners, the court shall make an order:

 

(i) Approving and confirming the petition;

 

(ii) Defining the boundaries of the district;

 

(iii) Establishing said district as a corporation by the nameproposed with powers:

 

(A) To sue and be sued;

 

(B) To adopt and use a corporate seal;

 

(C) To have perpetual succession;

 

(D) To build or otherwise acquire power lines and thetransformers and other electrical equipment necessary to connect with powerlines of the United States, the state of Wyoming, or any subdivision thereof totransmit power to any and all persons deciding to use same;

 

(E) To exercise the power of eminent domain as provided by thelaws of the state of Wyoming.

 

(iv) Appointing three (3) commissioners from such districts whoshall be freeholders or entrymen upon public lands in said district.

 

(b) The commissioners appointed by the court shall at all timesbe under the direction of the court and may be removed from office by the courtupon good cause shown; provided, however, no commissioner shall be removeduntil written charges specifying the grounds upon which such removal is soughtare filed and an opportunity given such commissioner to be heard at a hearingprovided. In case a commissioner has been removed under this provision thecourt shall immediately appoint a successor.

 

(c) All findings and orders of the court made at the hearingherein provided for shall be final and conclusive unless appealed from to the supremecourt within thirty (30) days after filing thereof.

 

37-7-110. Oath and bond of commissioners; quorum; majority rule; termof office.

 

Beforeentering upon their duties, such commissioners shall take and subscribe an oathto support the constitution of the United States and the constitution of thestate of Wyoming, to faithfully and impartially discharge their duties as suchcommissioners and to render a true account of their doings to the court bywhich they are appointed whenever required by law or the order of the court,and shall execute a bond running to the clerk of said court and his successorsin office as obligees, to be filed with said clerk for the benefit of theparties interested, in an amount to be fixed by the court or presiding judge,and with sureties to be approved by the court or presiding judge, conditionedfor the faithful discharge of their duties as such commissioners and thefaithful accounting of all moneys which shall come into their hands as suchcommissioners. A majority shall constitute a quorum and a concurrence of amajority in any matter within their duties shall be sufficient to itsdetermination. The commissioners appointed shall hold their office until thefirst Tuesday in the second succeeding December following the date of orderorganizing such district and until their respective successors are qualified.

 

37-7-111. Records of commissioners; annual statement; compensation andexpenses; suit upon bonds.

 

Thecommissioners shall keep an accurate record of all moneys collected on accountof the work under their charge and of all payments made by them and shall takevouchers of such payments and shall keep full, accurate and true minutes of alltheir proceedings. On the first day of November each year they shall file inthe office of the clerk of the court having jurisdiction in the matter anitemized statement of all their receipts and disbursements, and leave saidreport in such office for examination by parties interested at all times; andinclude a copy thereof in the regular call for the annual meeting hereinafterprovided. They shall receive for their services such compensation as the courtor presiding judge thereof may determine. They shall also be reimbursed fortheir actual reasonable expenses. Suit may also be brought upon their bonds,and the amount recovered shall be applied to the construction of the work or tothe party injured, as justice may require.

 

37-7-112. Commissioners to constitute corporate authority;organization; powers of board.

 

Thecommissioners appointed as aforesaid and their successors in office shall, fromthe entry of such order of confirmation constitute the corporate authority ofsaid power district, and shall exercise the power conferred on them by law.They shall organize a board, elect a president from their number and appoint asecretary-treasurer. The board shall have power, and it shall be their duty toadopt bylaws, manage and conduct the affairs and business of the district, makeand execute all necessary contracts, employ such agents, attorneys, officersand employees as may be required and prescribe their duties; to purchaseelectric current for light, heat and power purposes; to purchase, construct orotherwise acquire, power lines, transformers and other electrical equipmentnecessary to conduct and transmit such electric current to various people ofthe district who desire to use such electric current.

 

37-7-113. Duties of commissioners as to proposed work; report tocourt.

 

 

(a) As soon as may be after the organizationof said district or within such time as the court may direct, saidcommissioners shall proceed to have all necessary surveys made and shall lay outsaid proposed work making a map thereof, and plans and other specificationsthereof, and report in writing to the court:

 

(i) The extent and character of the proposed work;

 

(ii) If it be found necessary to change the boundaries of thesaid proposed district, previously fixed, they shall report said proposedchange, and, if possible, shall report the names, the residence and post-officeaddresses of the owners or persons entitled to possession of all lands affectedby said change in boundaries, but no such change in boundaries, shall be madeas to deprive the court of jurisdiction; provided, however, that if the ownersand those entitled to possession, by virtue of public land filing, of landsadjacent to the district, petition to have their lands brought into thedistrict, such petitioners may be considered the same as the originalpetitioners in making changes of boundaries;

 

(iii) What lands within the district, as by them reported, willbe injured by the proposed work, if any, and they shall therein award to eachtract, lot, easement or interest by whomsoever held the amount of damages whichthey shall determine will be caused to the same by the proposed work;

 

(iv) All lands within the district as by them reported will bebenefited by the proposed work and they shall assess against such lands bywhomsoever held the amount of benefits which they determine will be caused tothe same by the proposed work. The benefits so assessed are herein referred toas "the assessment roll";

 

(v) They shall also determine and report to the court the totalitemized amount as near as they can determine, that said proposed work willcost, including organization expenses and the unit cost upon which theassessments are based, which shall be designated as "cost ofconstruction";

 

(vi) The cost of construction which shall be assessed to thevarious tracts of land within said district in proportion to the assessedvaluation of each of such tracts of land as such valuation was last fixed anddetermined by the county assessor and county board of equalization of thecounty in which said lands are situated.

 

37-7-114. Notice and hearing on report of commissioners.

 

Uponthe filing of said report, the court or judge thereof shall make and enter anorder fixing the time and place when and where all persons interested mayappear and remonstrate against the confirmation thereof, and the clerk of saidcourt shall cause notice of the time and place of such hearing to be given toall parties interested which notice shall contain a brief description of thelands benefited and damaged, together with the net damage awarded the severaltracts, parcels, easements and corporations to which damages are awarded, andthe sum in each case assessed for benefits, and cost of construction againstsaid several benefited parcels, tracts, easements and corporations, and thebenefits apportioned to each parcel, tract, easement or corporation in thedistrict. Said notice shall be published at least three (3) successive weeks,prior to the day set for the hearing in one newspaper published in each countyin which said lands, or any part thereof within said district are situate (andif no newspaper is published in said county, in some newspaper in an adjoiningcounty), and by serving a copy of such notice on each of the persons, orcorporations, by said report recommended, to be assessed, or whose lands are bysaid report recommended to be included in said district and who resides in anyof the counties in which any lands of the proposed district are situated, atleast twelve (12) days before the day of hearing in the same manner that asummons is required to be served; provided, absence from the county of suchperson or corporation shall excuse personal service, whereupon due publicationof such notice shall be sufficient service.

 

37-7-115. Notice when lands situate in more than one county.

 

Incase the lands are situated in more than one county the notice published in thecounty wherein the court having jurisdiction is situated shall contain adescription of all the lands in said proposed district [with] the damagesawarded to the several parcels thereof, but the notice published in any othercounty or counties may contain a description of only the lands situate in saidcounty for which said publication is made, together with the damages awarded toand assessments for benefits against the several tracts, parcels, easements andinterests situate in said county for which publication is made. In case ofservice of said notice personally, or the acceptance and waiver thereof of allthe owners of the lands within the district, said service shall be sufficientand give the court jurisdiction without said publication.

 

37-7-116. Modification of report by order of court.

 

Ifthe court finds that the report requires modification, the same may by order ofthe court be referred back to the commissioners, who may be required to modifyit in any respect.

 

37-7-117. Order of confirmation of report or modified report; effectof confirmation; appeal.

 

Ifthere be no remonstrance, or if the finding be in favor of the validity of theproceedings, or after the report shall have been modified to conform to thefindings, the court shall confirm the report and the order of confirmationshall be final and conclusive, the proposed work shall be established andauthorized, and the proposed assessments approved and confirmed unless withinthirty (30) days an appeal be taken to the supreme court, and the said order ofconfirmation shall also fix the commissioner's bond.

 

37-7-118. Petitions regarding orders of confirmation; supplementalreport from commissioners.

 

Saidorder of confirmation may, at the same or at any subsequent term of said courtbe revised, modified or changed, in whole or in part, on petition of thecommissioners, after such notice as the court may require to partiesinterested. At any time prior to making the order confirming said report orthereafter, the court may permit the commissioners to present and file asupplemental report, or amend their report, as to any matter which, pursuant tothe provisions hereof, was or might have been included in the original reportpresented by them, and after reasonable notice given to all parties interested,in such manner as the court shall direct, the court may, upon the hearing insaid matter make such order as the case may require.

 

37-7-119. Assessment for construction; time of payment; interest.

 

Atthe time of the confirmation of such assessments, it shall be competent for thecourt to order the assessment for construction to be paid in not more thantwenty (20) installments, of such amounts and at such times as will beconvenient for the accomplishment of the proposed work, or for the payment ofprincipal and interest of such notes or bonds of said district, as the courtshall grant authority to issue for the construction of said work. The court mayalso, by such order, fix a date on which the first installment of theassessments of construction shall become due, not more than five (5) yearsafter the date of the order, and each of said installments shall draw interestat a rate not to exceed seven percent (7%) per annum from the date of saidorder.

 

37-7-120. Assessments due at same time as taxes; budget to be filedand approved by court; expenditures in excess of budget; unauthorized debtsvoid.

 

(a) Assessments to meet expenses of any currentyear of any district shall become due, payable and delinquent at such time ortimes each year as may be fixed by law for state and county taxes to becomedue, payable and delinquent. Commissioners having charge of any power districtshall on or before the first Tuesday of June of each year file with the clerkof the court having jurisdiction of such district, a report showing an itemizedestimate of the money to be raised by assessment within the district for thepurpose of constructing new work, maintenance, and to meet the yearly currentexpenses of the district. In addition to the amount above provided, thecommissioners may add a sum which in their judgment shall be sufficient toprovide for possible delinquencies. Within thirty (30) days after filing suchannual report, at a time and place to be fixed by the court or a judge thereof,the judge shall examine such report, hear all objections thereto, fix anddetermine the amount to be raised by assessments for the current year and causesuch adjudication to be entered of record in said court and a certified copythereof to be delivered to the commissioners of such district. Thecommissioners shall add thereto such amount as may be necessary to meet theprincipal and interest on lawful indebtedness of the district maturing duringthe current year, together with a sum which in their judgment shall besufficient to provide for possible delinquencies. When thus completed it shallbe known as "The Budget of .... District for the year (year)" andalso be verified under oath by any one of the commissioners.

 

(b) The commissioners of any power district within the state ofWyoming are hereby forbidden to incur any indebtedness for the current expensesof the district in excess of the amount provided in the budget. Provided,however, in case a greater sum than that provided in the budget is required,the commissioners may file a petition setting forth the causes therefor, withthe clerk of the court having jurisdiction of said district. Immediately uponthe filing of said petition the court shall make an order fixing the time andplace of hearing and directing the form and manner of notice thereof to begiven if the court deem such hearing advisable. If the court shall authorizethe expenditure of a greater sum of money the commissioners shall be authorizedto incur indebtedness equal to the amount of the additional sum authorized bythe court, and in case the expenditure occurs at a time when it is too late toplace the amount upon the assessment roll for the current year such amounts maybe added to the budget of ensuing years. All debts contracted in contraventionof this section shall be void.

 

37-7-121. Preparation of assessment roll; assessments based on countyassessments; commissioners to verify; levy of assessments; assessments toextend to tax roll.

 

Itshall be the duty of the commissioners of each power district on or before thethird Monday in July in each year to prepare an assessment roll of saiddistrict which shall contain the name of the owner together with thedescription of each lot, tract and easement of land within said district andthe aggregate assessment of benefits confirmed by the court against the same.Assessments to meet the current expense of a power district for any year shallbe proportioned upon the assessed valuation of the several benefited lots,tracts and easements in the district as such valuation was last fixed forassessment purposes by the county assessor and county board of equalization ofthe county in which the same are situated. The assessment roll shall also showthe amount assessed against each lot, tract, and easement of land in thedistrict to meet the principal and interest or the indebtedness of the districtfor the current year. When such assessment roll is completed it shall be signedby the commissioners of said district and verified by any one of them. Thecounty commissioners of said county upon the receipt of the assessment roll ofsaid district and at the time of making the requisite tax levy for county purposes,shall levy and assess against each lot, tract, and easement of land therespective amounts levied and assessed against the same on said assessmentroll. Thereupon the county commissioners shall certify to and deliver saidassessment roll to the county assessor of such county and in case the territoryembraced in such district is located in two (2) or more counties a copy of theassessment roll as certified to by the county commissioners of the countyhaving jurisdiction of such district shall be delivered to the assessor of eachcounty in which any of the land of the district is located. Upon receipt of theassessment roll the assessors of the counties embracing any of the lands ofsuch district, shall extend upon the tax roll of such county the respectiveamounts levied and assessed against each lot, tract, and easement of land, andagainst each corporation as shown by said assessment roll of said district.

 

37-7-122. County treasurer to collect taxes; interest coupons or bondsof district authorized for payment of district bond taxes; duty of countycommissioners as to unpaid taxes.

 

Itshall be the duty of the county treasurer of each county in which any powerdistrict is located in whole or in part to collect and receipt for all taxeslevied as herein provided in the same manner as is required in the receipt forand collection of taxes upon real estate for county purposes. The countytreasurer in case of taxes heretofore or hereafter levied as herein providedshall receive in payment of the district bond taxes above mentioned for theyear in which said taxes were levied, interest coupons or bonds of said powerdistricts maturing within said year the same as so much lawful money in theUnited States. Provided, however, that in the case of the nonpayment of anytaxes which have heretofore or may hereafter be levied as above provided, theboard of county commissioners upon application made shall have the power and itshall be their duty, upon written request of the board of such power district,to order the said treasurer to receive in full payment of the bond fund portionof said taxes the principal amount of said taxes levied, payable in bonds orbond interest coupons of said power district at their face value, and maturingwithin the year in which said tax levies were made, as so much lawful money ofthe United States.

 

37-7-123. Inspection and repair of power lines.

 

Thecommissioners and agents, servants and employees shall have the right to goupon all lands along any power line to inspect and repair the same whenevernecessary, doing no unnecessary damage, and shall not be liable for trespasstherefor.

 

37-7-124. Necessary additional assessments authorized under courtorder; notice required; payment.

 

Ifany assessment for construction, operation, maintenance or repair that thecommissioners shall have reported to the court is a smaller sum than is neededto carry out the purpose for which said assessment has been made or if in anyyear an additional sum is necessary to pay the interest on lawful indebtednessof said power districts, further or additional assessments on the landsbenefited shall be made by the commissioners of said power district under theorder of the court or presiding judge thereof, upon such notice as the court orjudge may direct, which further or additional assessment may be made payable ininstallments as specified herein and shall be treated and collected in the samemanner as the original assessments confirmed by the court in said powerdistrict.

 

37-7-125. Omission of assessments not to affect jurisdiction of courtor render previous assessments voidable; commissioners to correct omissions andreport to court.

 

Omissionto assess benefits, or to assess for construction, or to make additionalassessment or to make assessment for operation, maintenance or repairs againstany land or person which should have been assessed, or to award damages to anyone or more tracts of land or assessments in a power district shall neitheraffect the jurisdiction of the court to confirm the report, nor to render thebenefits assessed or the assessments for construction, or additionalassessments, or assessments for operation, maintenance, or repairs againstother lands or assessments against any person voidable, but the commissionersof said power district shall thereafter, as soon as they discover the omissionor receive notice thereof, either agree with the omitted parties upon theproper award or assessments and award the damages or make such assessments ofbenefits or assessments for construction, operation, maintenance or repair, andmake such additional assessments against the omitted lands and corporations andaward such damages as shall be just, and report the facts, together with suchassessments and awards, to the court.

 

37-7-126. Commissioners may borrow for unpaid construction or lawfuldebts; issuance of notes or bonds; interest specified.

 

Thecommissioners may borrow money, not exceeding the amount of "assessmentfor construction" as herein provided, unpaid at the time of borrowing forsuch purposes, or for the payment of any indebtedness that may have beenlawfully incurred, and may secure the same by notes or bonds bearing interestat a rate not to exceed seven percent (7%) per annum and not running beyond one(1) year after the last installment of the assessment, on the account of whichthe money is borrowed, shall fall due, which said notes or bonds shall not besold at less than ninety percent (90%) of their face value, which said bondsshall be transferable by delivery to the same extent as negotiable paper of thehighest character; and may deliver notes or bonds to the United States to beheld and when deemed desirable or when the appraised value of the land in thedistrict is double the bonded indebtedness, sold by it, and the net proceedsreceived from the notes or bonds applied to the liquidation of contractindebtedness of the district, and said notes or bonds shall be in such form,terms and denominations as may be fixed by the court, but which notes or bondsshall not be held to make the commissioners personally liable, but shallconstitute a lien upon the assessments for the repayment of the principal andinterest of such notes or bonds. In case any moneys derived from bonds sold topay for the construction, as herein provided, now or hereafter, remains on handafter such work is completed and paid for, and not raised for damages unpaidfor, such residue may be used in the maintenance and repair, as in this chapterprovided, before making assessment for such maintenance and repair.

 

37-7-127. Refunding of indebtedness.

 

Thecourt, may, upon the petition of the commissioners authorize them to refund anylawful indebtedness of the district now existing or which may hereafter beincurred by taking up and canceling all or any part of its outstanding notesand bonds, as fast as they come due or before, if the holders thereof willsurrender the same and issue in lieu thereof new notes or bonds of suchdistrict, payable in such longer time as the court shall deem proper, in anamount sufficient to retire notes and bonds of the district then outstandingand the unpaid accrued interest thereon, together with such an amount as thecommissioners of such district may deem necessary to provide for possiblefuture defaults and delinquencies in the payment of assessments, and bearinginterest not exceeding seven percent (7%) per annum. For the purpose ofproviding funds to pay such refunding bonds with interest thereon, thecommissioners may levy assessments against the land in such district, but notin excess of the benefits assessed. In the alternative the commissioners may,if they deem it advisable, issue said refunding bonds in an amount sufficientonly to retire all notes and bonds of the district then outstanding and theunpaid accrued interest thereon, and delinquencies in the payment ofassessments levied, from year to year, assessments against the land in suchdistrict for such purposes, but not in excess of the benefits assessed againstthe same.

 

37-7-128. Construction to be done by lowest responsible bidder;advertisement for bids; applicability of section.

 

Inall cases where the work to be done at any one time under the directions of thecommissioners will, in their opinion, cost to exceed twenty-five hundreddollars ($2,500.00), the same shall be let to the lowest responsible bidder,and the commissioners shall advertise for sealed bids, by notice published insome newspaper published in the county in which the petition is filed, and mayadvertise in one (1) or more newspapers published elsewhere. If there be nonewspaper published in the county in which the petition is filed, they shalladvertise in some newspaper published in an adjoining county, which said noticeshall particularly set forth the time and place when and where the bidsadvertised will be opened, the kind of work to be let and the terms of payment.Said commissioners may continue the letting from time to time, if in theirjudgment the same shall be necessary, and shall reserve the right to reject anyand all bids. This section shall not be construed to apply to the employment ofsuperintendent, engineer, attorney or other employee engaged in the generalwork of the district.

 

37-7-129. Payment, tender or deposit of damages required before startof construction; exception.

 

Thedamages allowed to the owners of lands shall be paid or tendered before thecommissioners shall be authorized to enter upon the lands for damage to whichthe award is made, for the construction of any power line or other workproposed thereon. If the owner is unknown or there shall be a contest in regardto the ownership of the lands, or the owner will not receive payment, or thereexists a mortgage or other lien against the same, or the commissioners cannotfor any other reason pay him, they may deposit the said damages with the clerkof the court, for the benefit of the owner, or parties interested, to be paidor distributed as the court shall direct, and such payment shall have the sameeffect as the tender to and acceptance of the damages awarded by the trueowners of the land. This section shall not, however, prevent saidcommissioners, their agents, servants and employees, going upon said lands todo any and all work found necessary prior to making their assessment ofbenefits and award of damages, and the trial on their report thereof.

 

37-7-130. Assessments as lien against property.

 

Eachand every sum assessed in any power district organized in the manner hereinprovided, as soon as such assessment is confirmed by the court, shall be and isdeclared to be a lien against the land so assessed, and unless some othermethod of collection is herein provided, it shall be collected in the samemanner as any other money judgment, provided that whenever said assessment is alien upon land it shall only be collected on said land on which it is a lien.

 

37-7-131. Bonds not adversely affected by change in assessment.

 

Nobonds or other money obligations issued by any power district shall beadversely affected by any subsequent change in assessment of benefits.

 

37-7-132. Commissioners declared public officers; acts presumedregular and valid; burden of proof on contestant.

 

Commissionersof power districts are hereby declared to be public officers. The presumptionshall be in favor of the regularity and validity of all their official acts.Whenever any report of the commissioners of any power district or any part ofany such report is contested, remonstrated against or called in question, theburden of proof shall rest upon the contestant, remonstrant or questioner.

 

37-7-133. Order confirming assessments as evidence of regularity.

 

Theorder confirming the assessments of benefits shall be conclusive as to theregularity of all proceedings relating to the assessments of benefits unlessappealed from within thirty (30) days after the entry of such order.

 

37-7-134. Election of commissioners; date; term of office.

 

Uponthe third Tuesday in November next preceding the expiration of terms of officeof any power district commissioners appointed in any power district organizedunder the provisions of this chapter, there shall be elected three (3)commissioners for such power district, one (1) for the term of one (1) year,one (1) for the term of two (2) years, and one (1) for the term of three (3)years, and upon the third Tuesday in November of each year thereafter anelection shall be held to elect a commissioner to succeed the outgoingcommissioner whose term of office shall be for a period of three (3) years.

 

37-7-135. Election of commissioners; hour and place; notice; votersqualified; conduct; proxies; record required.

 

Thecommissioners of the district shall fix the hour and place within theboundaries of the district of each election and preside at the same. It shallbe the duty of the commissioners at least twenty (20) days prior to the date ofthe election to mail to each person entitled to vote at his or her last knownplace of residence or business, a notice stating the time, place and purpose ofsuch election. Every person owning or entitled by virtue of public land filingto the possession of land situated within and being a part of any district, inwhich an election is to be held, shall be entitled to cast one (1) vote forevery one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) of assessed valuation of real propertyowned by him or her within said power district, or the major portion thereof,providing, that each person owning lands or entitled by virtue of public landfiling to possession of land within said district shall be entitled to at leastone (1) vote. At the hour and place of such election the commissioners shallcall the roll of those entitled to vote and the number of votes each isentitled to. They shall make a record of the qualified voters present, receiveall proxies, and prescribe the manner of canvassing votes. All proxies shall bein writing and signed by the person entitled to vote.

 

37-7-136. Election of commissioners; votes necessary to elect; fillingof vacancies; qualifications and duties of commissioners elected.

 

Noperson shall be elected as commissioner who shall not have received a majorityof all votes cast. No election shall be invalid by reason of the fact that amajority of the assessed valuation of real estate within the district was notrepresented at such election. Whenever the office of any elected commissionershall become vacant by reason of death, resignation or other cause, the vacancyshall be filled by the surviving commissioners for the unexpired term. In casesuch vacancy is not filled within thirty (30) days the court shall fill suchvacancy. All elected commissioners shall have the same qualifications andduties as herein prescribed for appointed commissioners.

 

ARTICLE 2 - REVENUE BOND POWER DISTRICTS

 

37-7-201. Petition for organization; assessments against real estate.

 

Ifthe petition for the organization of a power district under W.S. 37-7-101,states that the bonds to be issued by such district for the purpose of raisingmoney shall be a lien only upon the power plant, distribution system, and otherproperty used in the manufacture or distribution of electrical energy, and uponthe revenues from electrical energy so developed or distributed, the petitionor petitions of fifty (50) freeholders of the area to be served shall besufficient to give the court jurisdiction to hear such petition, and toorganize a power district; provided, no district organized under a petitionproviding such revenue bonds only, shall have authority to make any assessmentsagainst the real estate of the district, unless it shall amend its petition andfollow the procedure provided in W.S. 37-7-101.

 

37-7-202. Bonds issued only when authorized by district court; hearingand notice; interest rate; conditions of sale.

 

Powerdistricts organized pursuant to petitions stating that the bonds to be issuedby the district for the purpose of raising money shall be a lien only upon thepower plant, distribution system and other property used in the manufacture ordistribution of electrical energy, and upon the revenues from electrical energyso developed or distributed, may issue bonds only when so authorized by the districtcourt having jurisdiction thereof, and the bonds shall not be offered for saleto the public generally unless the court shall so provide in its order.Commissioners of a district desiring to issue bonds, shall first present to thecourt a full showing of the necessity and proposed conditions of the bonds,and, after giving such notice as the court may require to all partiesinterested, the court shall hear the petition and make orders fixing the termsand conditions of bond issue as shall to the court seem proper. Bonds shall notbe sold at less than ninety percent (90%) of their par value.

 

37-7-203. W.S. 37-7-201 through 37-7-212 to be cumulative authority;existing laws not repealed.

 

Thisact shall be construed as cumulative authority for the purposes named insections 1 and 2 hereof, and as to the manner and form of issuing revenue bondsfor any such purpose or purposes, and shall not be construed to repeal anyexisting laws with respect thereto, it being the purpose and intention of thisact to create an additional and alternate method for the purposes herein named.

 

37-7-204. Payment of principal and interest to be from revenues only;not to constitute indebtedness of borrower.

 

Theprincipal of and interest upon such bonds shall be payable solely from therevenues derived from the operation of the power system or plant, electriclight plant, power plant, power lines, transmission lines, or powerdistributing systems, for the purchase, construction, improvement, enlargement,extension, or repair of which the same are issued. No bond or coupon issuedpursuant to this act shall constitute an indebtedness of such borrower withinthe meaning of any state constitutional provision or statutory limitation. Itshall be plainly stated on the face of each such bond and coupon that the samehas been issued under the provisions of this act and that it does notconstitute an indebtedness of such borrower within any state constitutionalprovision or statutory limitation.

 

37-7-205. Bonds a mortgage lien for benefit of bond and couponholders.

 

Saidbonds shall be construed to and shall create a statutory mortgage lien upon anysuch power system, power plant, electric light plant, power lines, transmissionlines, or power distributing system or systems, and the appurtenances andextensions thereto so to be purchased, constructed, improved, enlarged,extended or repaired, to and in favor of the holders of said bonds and each ofthem and to and in favor of the holders of the coupons of said bonds, and eachof them.

 

37-7-206. System to remain subject to mortgage lien; proceedings tocompel performance of official duties; forced sale not authorized.

 

Suchsystem so purchased, constructed, improved, enlarged, extended or repairedshall remain subject to said statutory mortgage lien until payment in full ofthe principal of and interest upon said bonds. Any holder of any of said bondsor of any of the coupons representing interest accrued thereon, may, either atlaw or in equity, by suit, action, mandamus, or other proceedings, protect andenforce said statutory mortgage lien, and may, by suit, action, mandamus, orother proceedings, enforce and compel performance of all duties of theofficials of the borrower, including the fixing of sufficient rates, thecollection of revenues, the proper segregation of the revenues of the system,and the proper application thereof. Provided, however, that said statutorymortgage lien shall not be construed to give any such bond or coupon holderauthority to compel the sale of such system or any part thereof.

 

37-7-207. Appointment of receiver in case of default upon bonds.

 

Ifthere be any default in the payment of the principal of or interest upon any ofsaid bonds, any court having jurisdiction in any proper action may appoint a receiverto administer and operate the system so encumbered on behalf of the borrowerwith power to fix and charge rates and collect revenues sufficient to providefor the payment of any bonds or other obligations outstanding against saidsystem and for the payment of the expenses of operating and maintaining thesame and to apply the income and revenues of said system in conformity withthis act and the order providing for the issuance of such bonds.

 

37-7-208. Bonds and coupons held by governmental agencies exempt fromtaxes.

 

Thebonds and interest coupons issued hereunder are hereby exempted from any andall state, county, municipal and other taxation whatsoever under the laws ofthe state of Wyoming, and it shall be plainly stated on the face of each suchbond as follows: "The principal of and interest on this bond are exemptedfrom any and all state, county and municipal and other taxation whatsoeverunder the laws of the state of Wyoming, provided, however, that this exemptionshall apply only to such bonds and coupons owned and held by the public worksadministration or other governmental agencies."

 

37-7-209. Bonds negotiable instruments.

 

Suchbonds shall have all the qualities of negotiable instruments under the lawmerchant and the Negotiable Instruments Law.

 

37-7-210. Disposition of proceeds from sale of bonds; funds to be usedonly on system; unexpended balance; purchase and cancellation of bonds.

 

Thecommissioners of any such power district shall require that the proceeds of thesale of bonds issued under the provisions of this act be deposited in a specialaccount or accounts in a bank or banks which are members of the federal reservesystem, and shall require, insofar as practicable, that each such deposit besecured by the United States government securities having an aggregate marketvalue at least equal to the sum at the time on deposit, or, in any event, theproceeds shall be deposited in some bank or other depository, either within orwithout the state, which will secure such deposit satisfactorily to saidgoverning body. All moneys received from any such bonds shall be used solelyfor the purchase, construction, improvement, enlargement, extension or repair ofthe system for which issued, including any engineering, legal and otherexpenses incident thereto; provided, however, that such moneys may be used alsoto advance the payment of the interest on such bonds during the first three (3)years following the date of such bonds. Provided, that any unexpended balanceof the proceeds of the sale of any such bonds remaining after the completion ofthe project for which issued shall be paid immediately into the bond andinterest redemption fund for such bonds, and the same shall be used only forthe payment of the principal of the bonds, and interest for the first three (3)years following the date of the bonds, or, in the alternative, to acquireoutstanding bonds of the general issue from which the proceeds were derived, bypurchase of such bonds at a price (exclusive of accrued interest) not exceedingthe face amount thereof. Any bonds so acquired by purchase shall be cancelledand shall not be reissued.

 

37-7-211. Rates for services.

 

Ratesfor services furnished by any such system shall be fixed precedent to theissuance of the bonds. Such rates shall be sufficient to provide for thepayment of the interest upon and the principal of all such bonds as and whenthe same become due and payable, to create a bond and interest redemption fundtherefor, to provide for the payment of the expenses of administration andoperation and such expenses for maintenance of the system necessary to preservethe same in good repair and working order, to build up a reserve fordepreciation of the existing system, and to build up a reserve forimprovements, betterments and extensions to the existing system other thanthose necessary to maintain the same in good repair and working order ashereinbefore in this section provided. Such rates shall be fixed and revisedfrom time to time so as to produce these amounts, and the court in its orderauthorizing the issuance of said revenue bonds shall empower and direct thecommissioners of such power district to agree in and by the terms of saidrevenue bonds, and on the face of each bond at all times to maintain such ratesfor services furnished by such system as shall be sufficient to provide for theforegoing.

 

37-7-212. Authority of district court concerning bonds; bonds tocomply with federal laws; power system; state property.

 

Thedistrict court having jurisdiction over said power district shall have general,full, and complete authority to authorize the issuance of such revenue bonds,to make such order and decree from time to time as may be necessary to providefor the raising and accumulation of sufficient revenue and funds for thepayment of all principal and interest on said bonds, as same becomes due andpayable and after any order or decree shall have been made by any districtcourt of this state authorizing the issuance of any revenue bonds under thisact, such district court shall retain jurisdiction until all of said bonds andthe principal and interest thereon shall have been paid in full, to appoint a receiveron the application or petition of the owner or owners of said bonds or any ofthem, to collect the rates due said power district for services furnished andto conserve the same and apply the same to the payment of said bondedindebtedness, principal and interest, under the orders of such court; and inall such matters the court shall be deemed to have general jurisdiction to doany and all things necessary to carry out the intent and purpose of this actand to so provide that the principal and interest on bonds issued hereundershall be paid in full out of the revenue from the system or power plant orplants. It is the intent of this act, and there is hereby granted to thedistrict court such complete and full jurisdiction and powers over such proceedingsand bond issues that the district court in authorizing the issuance of any suchbonds may provide therein such terms and conditions as will fully comply withany federal law or laws of the United States of America relating thereto, andparticularly with the statute or statutes relating to public works so-calledand revenue bonds to be issued for such purposes as well as with any federallaw or laws appertaining to the reconstruction finance corporation and itspowers. Any such power system or plant, electric light plant, power plant,power lines, transmission lines, distributing system, or other property shallbe the property of the state of Wyoming and under its authority and control forthe benefit of the users of the electric power developed or distributedthereby.

 

ARTICLE 3 - BLACK HILLS JOINT POWER COMMISSION

 

37-7-301. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-302. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-303. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-304. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-305. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-306. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-307. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-308. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-309. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

37-7-310. Repealed by Laws 2009, Ch. 168, 207.

 

 

37-7-311. Repealed By Laws 2008, Ch. 44, 2.

 

 

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