§269-31  Application of this chapter.  (a)  This chapter shall not apply to commerce with foreign nations, or commerce with the several states of the United States, except insofar as the same may be permitted under the Constitution and laws of the United States; nor shall it apply to public utilities owned and operated by the State, or any county, or other political subdivision.

     (b)  Notwithstanding any provision of this chapter or any franchise, charter, law, decision, order, or rule to the contrary, the public utilities commission, sua sponte or upon the application of an electric cooperative, may waive or exempt an electric cooperative from any or all requirements of this chapter or any applicable franchise, charter, decision, order, rule, or other law upon a determination or demonstration that such requirement or requirements should not be applied to an electric cooperative or are otherwise unjust, unreasonable, or not in the public interest.  Notwithstanding the above, the public utilities commission and the consumer advocate shall at all times consider the ownership structure and interests of an electric cooperative in determining the scope and need for any regulatory oversight or requirements over such electric cooperative.  To the extent any other provision of this chapter or any franchise, charter, law, decision, order, or rule is contrary to or otherwise conflicts with this section in any manner, the provisions of this section shall govern and apply.

     (c)  For purposes of this chapter, an "electric cooperative" is a cooperative association or entity that is:

     (1)  Owned by its members;

     (2)  Formed pursuant to chapter 421C;

     (3)  Operated on a not-for-profit basis;

     (4)  Authorized pursuant to a legislatively granted franchise or other legislative authority to manufacture, sell, furnish, and supply electric light, electric current, or electric power to its members or a designated service area; and

     (5)  Governed by a board of directors who are members of the electric cooperative and who are democratically elected by members of the electric cooperative pursuant to applicable bylaws. [L 1913, c 89, §20; RL 1925, §2210; RL 1935, pt of §7966; RL 1945, pt of §4727; RL 1955, §104-28; HRS §269-31; am L 2013, c 57, §2]


Case Notes


  Commission has powers re federally regulated utilities.  305 U.S. 306 (1938).

  Shipping board has sole and exclusive jurisdiction to regulate rates of a common carrier by water in interstate commerce.  24 H. 136 (1917).

  Hawaiian Telephone, only Interstate Commerce Commission may fix rates.  26 H. 508 (1922).