Rogers, Shaw want CRTC to force B.C. to pay for infrastructure relocation

Originally published by The Wire Report

Rogers Communications Inc. and Shaw Communications Inc. have asked the CRTC to require British Columbia’s Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure to either pay half of the costs of mandatory relocation of their telecommunications infrastructure, or the same reimbursement the province gives to Telus Corp., “whichever is greater,” according to a joint Part 1 filed Friday by the two companies.

If the CRTC won’t make the province pay the relocation costs mandated by the B.C. ministry, Rogers and Shaw want the regulator to make Telus cover their costs themselves, “unless and until” Telus negotiates a deal with the province that gives Rogers and Shaw the same deal as Telus has with the ministry for relocation costs.

Because of Telus’s position as a historical monopoly in B.C., the Part 1 application said, most of Rogers’ and Shaw’s transmission lines on, over, under and along B.C. highways are supported by poles owned by Telus and the utility companies BC Hydro and FortisBC, and the province has a “single pole line policy” that prevents Rogers and Shaw from building their own poles.

The ministry, Rogers and Shaw point out in their application, has an agreement to compensate Telus and the utility companies for costs when they are forced to relocate infrastructure.

Rogers and Shaw said in the application they have been trying to negotiate agreements with the ministry to get the same deal, but to no avail. Quoting ministry documents, Rogers and Shaw point out that the ministry says it will only provide compensation for costs to “only to the structure permittee (and not licensees).”

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