By - Jon Brown

Joint Use 101
April 10-11, 2017 | Chicago, IL

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As technology advances and the demand for reliable, faster broadband services increases, utility pole owners are faced with increasing pressure to allow wireless and small cell attachments on their poles. But who will pay? What rights do the utilities and pole owners have regarding their own assets? Wading through the waters of joint use agreements can be difficult, especially if these agreements are not up to date. Add increasing pressure from the FCC, strict timelines, and low rental rates, electric utilities don’t always know what their best options are, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

This course will provide attendees with the experience, tools, and education that will help them learn how to efficiently monitor their assets and gain money back that they might have previously lost on rental rates and contracts. The course will include the history of joint use, how it has changed through the years, and will answer the 5 W’s of joint use. Through a PowerPoint presentation and open discussion, attendees will learn from not only the instructor, but from their peers as well in order to identify what the best practices are in regards to joint use management.

By drawing from personal experience, the instructor will answer important questions regarding joint use today, including, but not limited to:

  • How does joint use affect a utility?
  • What rights do attaching companies have today?
  • How does the National Electric Safety Code (NESC) apply to the utilities and attaching companies?
  • Who controls a joint use pole?
  • Challenges for third party companies
  • What is the difference between joint use and joint ownership?
  • What is a violation?
  • What is a cost causer?
  • Why does the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) get involved with joint use?
  • What is the difference between the Public Utility Commission (PUC) and the FCC?

Learning Outcomes

  • Discuss how joint use started and where it is going
  • Identify the difference in proposal types
  • Define what a joint use violation is and the variety of different types\
  • Explain what a cost causer is
  • Recognize why joint use is so important
  • Identify how joint use affects the company’s bottom line
  • Create an environment where joint use is not the enemy
  • Explain what controls joint use
  • Recognize the importance of the National Electric Safety Code (NESC)
  • Describe the differences between joint use and joint ownership
  • Identify how to determine a cost causer



EUCI has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).  In obtaining this accreditation, EUCI has demonstrated that it  complies with the ANSI/IACET Standard which is recognized internationally as a standard of good practice. As a result of their Authorized Provider status, EUCI is authorized to offer IACET CEUs for its programs that qualify under the ANSI/IACET Standard.

EUCI is authorized by IACET to offer 1.0 CEUs for this event.


Requirements for Successful Completion of Program

Participants must sign in/out each day, be in attendance for the entirety of the course

Instructional Methods

PowerPoint and open discussion will be used in this course.


Monday, April 10, 2017

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. :: Course Timing

12:00 – 1:00 p.m. :: Group Luncheon

  • Overview – History of Joint Use
  • Reasons for Joint Use
    • Multiple Utility Companies
    • Increase of Cable Television and Internet Providers
  • How Does Joint Use Work?
  • The 5 W’s of Joint Use
    • Joint Ownership Policies
      • How poles are broken down and owned by several utility companies
      • Which owner controls the pole?
      • “Ownership Parity”
    • Agreements between Electricity Provider and Incumbent Local Exchange Carrier (ILEC)
      • Additional Pole Owners – What Role do They Play?
        • Municipalities
        • City
        • State
        • Private organizations
      • The Role of Third Party Attachers
        • Competitive Local Exchange Carriers (CLEC)
        • Cable Television Providers
        • Communication Providers

12:00 – 1:00 p.m. :: Group Luncheon

  • How Does the NESC Affect Joint Use?
  • The Balance of Power for Attachments
  • Proposals and The Different Types
    • Paper or Electronic
  • Challenges of Joint Use
    • Communication Is Key!
    • Pole Maintenance- Who’s Responsible?
    • What is a Cost Causer?
    • What is a Violation and What are the Different Types?
  • Responsibilities of the Pole Owner
    • Pole Inspection
    • Coordination of the Various Attachers
    • Risk Management
    • Safety and Environmental Compliance
    • Public Right of Way
    • Emergency Response
    • Understand What Controls Joint Use

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Continental Breakfast

8:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. :: Course Timing

  • Joint Use Agreements
  • NESC Mandates Required and the Code Rights for Third Party Licensing Companies
    • Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
    • National Electrical Safety Code (NESC)
    • Public Utility Commissions (PUCs)
    • Public Service Commissions (PSCs)
  • Overview of Current Regulations
    • What Rights do Pole Owners Have?
    • What Rights do Communication Companies Have?
  • Discussion of What can be Expected Regarding Joint Use and New Technology


Larry Thompson, COO, President, UtiliServ Solutions Inc.

Mr. Thompson has over four decades of experience in the electric energy industry.  He is the present owner of UtiliServ Solutions Inc., located in Hudson Ohio, which specializes in data collection, pole data analysis, double wood, distribution surveys, utility pole consulting for the electric, telephone, and broadband industries.

Mr. Thompson’s experience working for the Ohio Edison Electric Company “A First Energy Company” developed layers of knowledge regarding line construction, line operations, engineering, GIS conversion coordination, storm restoration, and joint use management that allowed him to create processes and procedures to create a Joint Use Department to manage the dynamics of joint use. 

Larry has spoken at many joint use conferences across the country.  His desire is to build a knowledge base of joint use to simplify what it really means for all companies.  Mr. Thompson specializes in the NESC “National Electric Safety Code” in reference to utility line construction.  Mr. Thompson’s desire to educate the industry on joint use is a passion because of the misunderstandings in the operations side of the industry.


The Westin Michigan Avenue
909 N. Michigan Ave
Chicago, IL 60611

To reserve your room, please call 1-312-943-7200
Please indicate that you are with the EUCI group to receive the group rate.

Or you can use this link to book online


Room Rate:

The room rate is $229.00 single or double plus applicable taxes.

Room Block Dates:

A room block has been reserved for the nights of April 9 – 10, 2017.

Rate Available Until:

Make your reservations prior to March 15, 2017. There are a limited number of rooms available at the conference rate. Please make your reservations early.


Event Standard RateAttendees

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