Regulated utility services offered by a cooperative shall be reasonably adequate, subject to the regulations of the Commission, as provided in § 56-231.34. The charge made by any such cooperative for any regulated utility service rendered or to be rendered, either directly or in connection therewith, shall be nondiscriminatory, reasonable and just, and every discriminatory, unjust or unreasonable charge for such regulated utility service is prohibited and declared unlawful. Reasonable and just charges for service within the meaning of this section shall be such charges as shall produce sufficient revenue to pay all legal and other necessary expenses incident to the operation of the system, and shall include but not be limited to maintenance cost, operating charges, interest charges on bonds or other obligations, to recover such stranded costs and transition costs as may be authorized in this title, to provide for the liquidation of bonds or other evidences of indebtedness, to provide adequate funds to be used as working capital, as well as reasonable reserves and funds for making replacements and also for the payment of any taxes that may be assessed against such cooperative or its property, it being the intent and purpose hereof that such charges shall produce an income sufficient to maintain such cooperative property in a sound physical and financial condition to render adequate and efficient service and additional amounts that must be realized by the cooperative to meet the requirement of any rate covenant with respect to coverage of principal of and interest on its debt contained in any indenture, mortgage, or other contract with holders of its debt, provided that any such indenture, mortgage or other contract must have been approved by the Commission pursuant to Chapter 3 (§ 56-55 et seq.) of this title. Any rate for regulated utility services that is too low to meet the foregoing requirements shall be unlawful.
1999, c. 874; 2000, cc. 944, 999.