One-Call Legislation

Colorado 811 Legislative Focus and Timeline
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Damage Prevention Stakeholder,

Colorado 811 or CO811 is initiating regular correspondence with its members and industry stakeholders to inform them of the status of the 2018 legislative changes to the Colorado State One Call Law. The Colorado 811 correspondence will take the following forms: 1) “Legislative Bits” which are monthly emails and social media posts addressed to interested stakeholders; 2) the legislative page on the CO811 website; 3) A FAQ or Frequently Asked Questions page on the CO811 website; 4) a series of educational videos on the CO811 YouTube channel; and 5) free presentations offered by the CO811 Damage Prevention Liaisons around the state. The Colorado 811 resources are posted at https://colorado811.org/one-call-legislation and they will be frequently updated.

CO811 embraces the changes made to the One Call Law mandated by the Colorado Legislature and will continue to deliver the highest level of service while providing exceptional value to all our members and stakeholders. Our stakeholders include, but are not limited to: facility owners and operators, excavators, government agencies, industry associations and the general public. The recent changes in the One Call Law should encourage and result in improved damage prevention practices that will protect the critical underground infrastructure we all depend upon daily. The changes in the law will also provide a safer environment for workers and the citizens of Colorado.

LEGISLATIVE FOCUS

The 2018 One Call legislative changes focused on four areas:

  1. The new law eliminates any distinction between Tier One and Tier Two members. This means Colorado 811 will be a true “One Call System”. The new membership structure is mandatory on January 1, 2019 and existing Tier Two members will have until January 1, 2021 to convert their membership status to Tier One and update their underground facility registration with CO811. All Tier Two members are encouraged to transition to Tier One membership prior to 2019 (Tier Two members will be required to submit a registration form for Tier One membership).
  2. The 2018 law created a Colorado Damage Prevention Safety Commission. Once established, the Colorado Damage Prevention Safety Commission will be responsible for reviewing complaints from stakeholders and enforcing the provisions of the new One Call Law which can include imposing penalties for violations of the law and advising stakeholders on best practices and policies to enhance safety while improving efficiencies. The Commission will consist of 15 appointed stakeholder representatives who will meet at least quarterly to review and resolve complaints filed by stakeholders. A new penalty schedule has been defined in the One Call Law and the Commission has the power to fine any stakeholder who does not comply with the state One Call Law, except for Home Rule cities. Home Rule cities can choose to accept the Safety Commission guidelines and rulings or establish their own Commission for local enforcement.
  3. Excavators have a voting representative on the CO811 Board of Directors. Under the new One Call Law, excavators will have three seats on the Commission; two through the CO811 excavator membership and one through the Colorado Contractors Association. Excavators are encouraged to immediately join CO811 as a member to gain representation and have a voice on the Commission. Elections for CO811’s commission seats will be held from July to September. The excavator membership fee is $100 per year.
  4. Implementation of a Subsurface Utility Engineering ticket will provide the design and engineering community with more consistent information and responses from Facility Owners (FOs). FOs will have up to ten days to respond directly to the design/engineering firm with documentation, which may include facility location information, maps and/or a facility locate. The design/engineering firm must pay the FOs directly for these services. As with the current Engineering Ticket, excavation activities cannot occur with this ticket type.

Additional information on the One Call Law changes and the potential impact to stakeholders and CO811 operations and procedures will be discussed in coming months.

IMPORTANT DATES

The new One Call Law takes effect on August 8, 2018. The Safety Commission should be in place by January 1, 2019 and should begin to accept complaints or concerns sometime in early 2019. Current Tier Two members should begin converting to Tier One and updating their facility registration at their earliest convenience. Tier Two to Tier One conversion should be completed on or before January 1, 2021. Members converting from Tier Two to Tier One will receive notifications via electronic transmission free of charge through December 31, 2020.

IMPLEMENTATION PLANNING

CO811 has developed a comprehensive plan to ensure a successful transition and implementation of the new changes in the One Call Law. Listed below are a few of the major tasks that have been started:

FAQ Page: A legislative FAQ page was posted on the CO811 website. Stakeholders can also submit questions by visiting: https://colorado811.org/legislative-faqs-2018/

Tier Two Communication: An email was sent to all Tier Two members outlining the conversion requirements. In addition, a survey will be sent out at the end of July to Tier Two members.

Change Buffer Zone: A soon to be completed study will determine the financial, operational and safety impact of modifying the size of the buffer zone for dig site and member notification area. The CO811 Board of Directors will review the findings of this study in July and determine if a change is warranted. A change in the buffer zone could reduce transmissions provided to some members.

Commission Memorandum of Understanding (MOU): Colorado 811 and the Department of Labor will establish a Memorandum of Understanding or MOU between the Commission and CO811. The MOU will define the working relationship between CO811 and the Safety Commission to include administrative support, data access and data reporting.

Data Reporting: Consultants have been engaged to develop a data repository and stakeholder reporting engine to support damage incident and stakeholder research for the Commission.

Educational Platform: A web-based learning platform to deliver a modularized learning experience will be implemented. The current Damage Prevention course will be updated to include the changes in the One Call Law and the changes in the CO811 operational procedures.

Damage Prevention Liaisons: CO811 will schedule presentations throughout the State hosted by the five Damage Prevention Liaisons from CO811. These highly informative presentations will review the new legislative mandates and assist with Tier Two member conversions which will begin August 1, 2018.

CO811 will continue to provide regular updates on the changes in the One Call Law and the impact on the CO811 contact center operations and procedures. Please continue to visit the CO811 legislative webpage or contact the Damage Prevention Liaison in your area if you have any further questions.

Thank you,

J.D. Maniscalco

Colorado 811, Chief Executive Officer

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By Whitney Nichols
Legislative FAQs – 2018
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Frequently Asked Questions

When will Tier 2 Members need to start paying for tickets as a Tier 1 Member?

All Tier 2 members who convert to Tier 1 will not be charged outgoing transmission fees until January 1, 2021.

Are there new requirements regarding road grading?

Yes, there are new requirements regarding road grading. The Procedures Committee of Colorado 811 is currently devising specific procedures and guidelines that will be available within the next couple of months. (From law: ANNUAL ROAD MAINTENANCE THAT DOES NOT EXCEED SIX INCHES IN DEPTH CONDUCTED BY A GOVERNMENTAL AGENCY ON AN EXISTING UNPAVED ROAD, THE MARKING SHALL BE CONSIDERED VALID FOR UP TO ONE HUNDRED EIGHTY DAYS.)

Will there be a fee for engineering tickets that is different from the existing fee?

 The cost or fee for the outgoing transmission will remain the same for all members. The costs associated with an engineering locate request will be paid by the project owner.

What is ASCE 38 Standard?

ASCE Standards provide technical guidelines for promoting safety, reliability, productivity, and efficiency in civil engineering. For more information please visit https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/programadmin/asce.cfm

Who is required to locate laterals in the public right-of-way?

 All underground facility owner/operators are responsible for the location of service laterals in the public right-of-way.

What are home rule cities and how are they different?

Home rule cities by the Colorado constitution are cities that have the full right of self-government in local and municipal matters.  The larger home rule cities include Denver, Aurora, Pueblo, Colorado Springs, Fort Collins and Grand Junction. Home Rule cities can create their own safety commissions and can enforce the one-call law and imposed penalties for failure to comply with the law.

Can an excavator put another excavator on his/her ticket? How many can you list on one ticket?

 Yes, an excavator requiring existing marked underground facilities to be exposed may list a single secondary excavator on its notice to Colorado 811.

Will there be an entity responsible for holding stakeholders accountable under the new law?

Yes, the Colorado Safety Commission will have the responsibility to enforce the provisions of the law related to safe practices.  The Safety Commission can impose penalties for failure to comply with the law.  Home Rule cities may create a safety commission which also have the power to impose penalties for failure to comply with the law.  Facility owners and operators and excavators may bring civil actions for damage claims separate from the actions of the Safety Commission.

How will Colorado 811 provide documentation of the underground facilities in the form of hand written/ digital sketches or photography?

It is Colorado 811’s intent to provide the excavator this information through the Positive Response system.

Will Colorado 811 allow an excavator to white-line a job site or provide a map without defining the dig area on the locate ticket?

No, not at this time.

Did the definition for exemptions change under the new law?

Yes, there are several modifications in the new law regarding exemptions they include: farmers/ranchers and new requirements for governmental agencies relative to road grading. Please note, there is no exemption for gravity fed systems. Although, these exemptions exist it is extremely dangerous to dig without first notifying Colorado 811 for the location of underground facilities.

What is the significance of defining “gravity-fed systems” in the law? Where is it referenced under the new legislation?

Gravity fed systems are now defined to clarify what information has to be provided in the event there is a request for a locate related to sub-surface utility engineering. The law defining this exemption is located at section 9-1.5-102 (3.4).

Can a member convert from Tier 2 to Tier 1 before Jan, 1, 2019?

Yes, a Tier 2 can convert to Tier-1 before Jan. 1, 2019. Colorado 811 has agreed to the conversion at no charge to allow an appropriate amount of time to accommodate all Tier 2 members.

Will there be a Tier 2 Director on the Board of Directors after the new law is passed?

Yes, there will be a Tier 2 Board of Director until December 31, 2020.

Will Colorado 811 provide data to the Safety Commission on an annual basis?

Yes.  Colorado 811 will annually provide a report as well as real time data for the Safety Commission’s work related to underground excavations and safety.

What cities are exempt from complying with the new Safety Commission requirements?

Only Home Rule cities are exempt from complying with the Safety Commission requirements but they must create their own safety commissions.

How will licensed professional engineers receive documentation related to Subsurface Utility Engineering Notifications?

Within 10 days of the notice provided, licensed professional engineers will receive documentation directly from the facility owner/operator.

Click here to submit any legislative questions

Click here to download a pdf of the 2018 Legislative FAQs

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By Whitney Nichols
SENATE BILL 18-167 Signed MAY 25, 2018
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Senate Bill 18-167 was signed on today, May 25, 2018 by Colorado Legislators. This legislation is aimed at improving safety by enhancing the One Call system (also known as the 811 system) in Colorado by the implementation of an enforcement program, allowing engineering firms to submit locate tickets for subsurface utility engineering and transitioning to a one-tier or true One Call system.

Download the latest version of the Senate Bill 18-167.

Download the Senate Bill 18-167 Press Release.

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By Whitney Nichols
2017 Legislative Update
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2017 One-Call Legislative Update Legislative Update 2.15.17

Review and download the 2017 One-Call Legislative update from Colorado 811 CEO, J.D. Maniscalco. This update was presented at the 2017 Weld County Damage Prevention Breakfast on February 15 in Greeley, CO.

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By Whitney Nichols
One-Call Legislation
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Executive Summary:
Click Here to View the entire study in your browser (.pdf)
Download entire study: (.zip)
Colorado’s Underground Damage Prevention stakeholders maintain a very strong record for public safety and damage prevention, with no deaths for over 5-years and 2 injuries in 2014. Despite the many efforts that underlie this strong record, reported underground facility damages have recently begun trending upward, with a 24% increase in gas distribution pipeline damages from 2013 to 2014.

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By vmaniscalco