Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Effort to recover utility fees blocked.

Byline: Rosalie Rayburn Journal Staff Writer

The New Mexico Supreme Court recently denied an attempt by Bernalillo County to force state regulators to make utilities repay what the county called illegally collected franchise fees.

The Electricity Utility Restructuring Act passed in April 1999 ended the utilities' right to collect such fees from customers living outside municipal areas.

Franchise fees represent the money utilities pay municipalities for rights of way for poles, wires and transmission lines. Utilities in turn collect that money from customers through a charge on bills. …

Log in to your account to read this article – and millions more.