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(1) These regulations apply to all portions of federal-aid highway systems in Montana. They establish requirements for occupancy of highway rights-of-way by:

(a) Utility facilities having property rights which have not been extinguished as a result of the utility facilities having been relocated, or have not been extinguished by specifically acquiring the property rights in question. ARM 18.7.211 covers and explains the status of and actions to be taken regarding situations where both a utility company and the department have property rights in a given piece of property.

(b) All other utility facilities as herein defined.

(2) Except as noted in subsection (3) of this rule, these regulations shall apply to:

(a) New utility facilities as herein defined. Specific regulations governing these facilities are covered in ARM 18.7.221 through 18.7.232.

(b) Existing utility facilities presently occupying state highway right-of-way. Such facilities shall be governed by ARM 18.7.225.

(c) Reconstruction or major changes in existing utility facilities presently occupying state highway right-of-way.

(d) Existing utility facilities which must be modified, adjusted or relocated for the accommodation of new state highway construction.

(e) Retained facilities on new state highway projects where facility design and construction location are reasonably acceptable and not hazardous. Such facilities shall be governed by ARM 18.7.225.

(f) Occupancy by utility-type facilities that do not have a statutory right to occupy highway right-of-way, but are allowed under established use and encroachment permits administered by the department. Longitudinal occupancy of highway right-of-way by a non-utility is contrary to department policy. Where such longitudinal occupancy is approved by the district administrator, it will only be by a revocable encroachment permit.

(3) These regulations shall not apply to facilities operated and maintained by local units of government within their jurisdictional areas unless they occupy right-of-way of federal-aid highway projects.

(4) Lands administered by the department in excess of highway right-of-way are not subject to occupancy under these regulations. Easements or permits for use of such lands are obtained through the department's right-of-way bureau, land section supervisor, Helena, Montana.

History: Sec. 60-3-101 and 60-4-402 MCA; IMP, Sec. 60-3-101 and 60-4-402 MCA; Eff. 12/31/72; AMD, 1995 MAR p. 854, Eff. 5/12/95.

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