Public Utility Law

Utility Rates • Cable Franchises • Right of Way

Minnesota Utilities and Telecommunications Law Attorneys

At Kennedy & Graven, Chartered, we represent the interests of municipalities throughout Minnesota in issues pertaining to rates and agreements for electric power, natural gas, telephone, and cable television services. Our attorneys have focused knowledge and years of experience dealing with the complex contracts and state and federal laws governing public utilities.

Public Utility Rate Issues

Our firm represents the Suburban Rate Authority (SRA), a joint powers organization consisting of thirty-eight Twin Cities suburban municipalities. The SRA regularly intervenes in rate cases before the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission that involve Northern States Power, Minnegasco, or US West. SRA members comprise over 800,000 residents and businesses. Through its representation by K & G attorneys, the SRA has participated successfully in resolving numerous and significant rate issues in the utility area over the last twenty years.

Our attorneys are available as general counsel or special counsel to cities and townships statewide on utility rates design, utility rates disputes, utility franchise agreements, and other public utility issues.

Cable TV Franchise Matters

Our attorneys have advised numerous municipalities concerning cable-franchising matters such as renewal, transfers, and enforcement issues. We have significant experience with assisting municipal clients in encouraging private investment in telecommunications infrastructure and in developing municipal telecommunications networks.

In addition, our telecommunications attorneys have represented the Minnesota Association of Community Telecommunications Administrators (MACTA), both as legal counsel and legislative representative. MACTA is an association of municipalities and public officials concerned with regulating telecommunications providers, primarily cable television operators, and managing use of public right-of-ways by telecommunications providers.

K & G can capably address cable franchise renewals, transfers, franchise administration, and enforcement.

Public Right of Way • Towers and Antennas

Our attorneys have participated actively in recommending municipal right-of-way (ROW) standards that were ultimately adopted by the Public Utilities Commission. Our attorneys have assisted in developing local ROW ordinances for many Minnesota municipalities.

Our experience in land use and telecommunications law also enables us to provide counsel in all wireless telecommunications issues facing municipal clients:

  • Use of the right-of-way by utility and telecommunications users
  • Tower or antenna space leases with wireless providers on public property
  • Zoning of tower and antenna placement on private property

Contact our Minneapolis office at 612-337-9300, or direct your public utility, cable, or telecom questions to the following K&G attorneys:

James M. Strommen
Shareholder & Former President
Robert J.V. Vose