49-31-12.4. Filing of new or changed tariff--Procedures for commission. If a telecommunications company files with the commission any tariff stating a new rate or price or any new practice affecting any noncompetitive telecommunications service, the commission:
(1) May upon a petition to intervene or on its own initiative, with or without answer or other formal pleading by the interested company or companies but upon reasonable notice, enter upon a hearing concerning the propriety or reasonableness of the rate, price or practice;
(2) Pending any hearing pursuant to subdivision (1) of this section, the commission may suspend the operation of the tariff and the use of the rate or practice upon order with notice to the company of the reasons therefor. The suspension may not last longer than one hundred twenty days beyond the proposed effective date of the rate or practice. However, the commission may extend the period an additional sixty days;
(3) During any hearing conducted pursuant to subdivision (1) of this section, receive whatever evidence, statements or arguments the parties may offer pertinent to the investigation. The burden is on the company to prove that the tariff is fair and reasonable;
(4) After any hearing pursuant to subdivision (1) of this section, determine a fair and reasonable rate or price, render a written decision specifically setting out the rate or price and prepare a record of its proceeding and findings; and
(5) If a rate has been suspended pursuant to subdivision (2) of this section and the commission has not issued an order at the expiration of one hundred eighty days after the proposed effective date of the rate or practice, the proposed change may go into effect at the end of such period. In the case of a proposed increased rate or price, the telecommunications company shall keep an accurate account of all amounts received by reason of the increase. The company shall specify by whom and on whose behalf the amounts are paid. Upon completion of the hearings and entry of a commission decision, the commission may require the telecommunications company to refund, with interest, to the persons in whose behalf such amounts were paid, the portion of the increased rates or prices found to be unfair or unreasonable.Source:
SDC 1939, §§ 52.0217 to 52.0219; SDCL, §§ 49-10-26, 49-10-27, 49-10-33 to 49-10-35; SL 1979, ch 307, §§ 67 to 69; SL 1980, ch 322, § 120; SL 1982, ch 326; SL 1987, ch 345, § 59; SL 1988, ch 375, § 20; SL 1992, ch 328, § 20.