San Diego Law Review


Michael Coppess

Library of Congress Authority File


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This Comment analyzes the validity of state-enforced access to public utility communications, focusing on utility property rights and speech rights. The author begins by addressing the economic characteristics of public utilities and by examining whether the state's police power has been exercised within federal constitutional boundaries. The author then analyzes the impact of mandated access on a utility's rights under the fifth and sixth amendment takings clause and first amendment free speech guarantee. The author argues that access to utility mailings will allow representative groups to communicate with utility ratepayers and to provide organized and informed representation before regulatory commissions, but that laws giving speakers access to space inside the utility's billing envelopes reduce the utility's ability to use the space.

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