Steering Committee to Rewrite the District One-Call Law
Chairman, Scott Brown: Vice Chairman, Meena Gowda, Esq.
Host Venue – Miss Utility Call Center in Hanover, MD
Minutes of the Meeting – February 22, 2016
Prepared by Dora Parks, Secretary
PURPOSE OF REWRITE
To modify the current District of Columbia One-Call Law, Title 34 “Public Utilities”; Subtitle 7, Chapter 27 to meet the requirements of PHMSA’s Nine Key Elements of an effective damage prevention program and to reflect best and current practices. Enforcement of the DC law will have its foundation in outreach and education.
The 53rd meeting of the Steering Committee was called to order at 9:10 am by Chairman Brown. Customary committee and guest introductions were made, there were (12) in attendance.
Chairman Brown started the meeting by reviewing the committee’s progress to date regarding the Title 34 rewrite. The committee’s attention to public safety through initiatives to prevent utility damages considering PHMSA’s 9 Key Elements, Common Ground Alliance Best Practices and surrounding states (Maryland and Virginia) damage prevention laws. The future enforcement plan for Title 34, if enacted could be the model for the nation.
The committee reviewed the Notice of Probable Violator flow chart process #2, revisions were made. The flow chart depicts each juncture of the violation process to the point of an appeal to the District’s Court of Appeals, suggesting the Attorney General’s Office represent the District’s Authority.
Committee member Kate Kelley, stated the Mayor’s office has received the PHMSA letter regarding its Pipeline Damage Prevention Final Rule and the Title 34 working draft. A staff person has been designated from the Office of Federal & Regional Affairs to monitor the progress of the rewrite. Kate provided information on how other enforcement boards function within the District of Columbia.
The committee outlined its intention for the District’s damage prevention and public safety Authority Board;
Board will include stakeholder subject matter expert volunteers
Focus is public safety through utility damage prevention efforts
Due process for probable law violators
Mayor to select the board members from a list provided by the stakeholder entities
Meetings are open to the public and transparent
Fines and funding will not go to a general fund; they will provide the means for a proactive District damage prevention outreach, education and operations
Authority to maintain the integrity of enforcement purpose and intent
The committee agreed this approach is unlike current District enforcement but believes it would serve the best possible result in the utility damage prevention and safety arena.
Chairman Brown encouraged committee members to attend a Virginia Advisory meeting and a Maryland Authority meeting to review both state processes of enforcement.
The Maryland Authority meets the first Wednesday of the month at 7223 Parkway Drive, Suite 100 Hanover, Maryland 21076 at 9:00am.
The Virginia Advisory Committee meets the first Tuesday of the month at 1300 East Main Street Richmond, VA at 9:00am.
Chairman Brown asked committee members to review the draft in its entirety and be prepared to offer comments and revisions at the next meeting in preparation of draft legal format.
The meeting adjourned at 11:00am.
Scheduled committee meetings at Miss Utility, call center starting at 8:30am,
Monday, February 29, 2016
Monday, March 21, 2016
Title 34 Rewrite Steering Committee meetings are open to the public and are held at the Miss Utility Call Center located at; 7223 Parkway Drive, Suite 100 Hanover, MD 21076.
Meeting minutes, attendee list and Title 34 working draft copies are available for review at,