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Subject 515-16-16 RAILROAD CONDEMNATIONS PROCEEDINGS

Rule 515-16-16-.01 Purpose of Rail Condemnation Proceedings

O.C.G.A. §§ 46-8-120 through 46-8-124 requires Commission approval before any railroad company can file any action in the Superior Court to condemn real property for rail right-of-way or for erection of rail facilities.

Rule 515-16-16-.02 Procedure for Rail Condemnation Petitions

Upon receipt of a petition filed by a railroad company with the Commission seeking approval of proposed condemnation, (with proof of service of the same upon the property owner whose property is being condemned and upon the Consumer's Utilities Counsel of the Governor's Office of Consumer Affairs), the Commission will assign such petition to a hearing officer for hearing pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 46-2-58. If the hearing officer cannot assist the parties in mediating a purchase agreement for such property proposed for condemnation within forty-five (45) days after the filing of such petition, then the hearing officer will set the matter down for hearing to determine if there is a legitimate public purpose for the proposed condemnation. Within thirty (30) days after the close of the record in such hearing, the hearing officer will render a recommended decision or initial decision, from which any party can seek reconsideration before the full Commission.

Rule 515-16-16-.03 Commission Order in Condemnation Cases

If the Commission ultimately determines such condemnation to serve a public purpose, it shall issue a final order approving any condemnation petition by a railroad company, and the Commission shall provide the petitioning railroad company with a certified copy of such order for use by such company in its condemnation action under Title 22.