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Balch’s Josh Archer, Brooke Gram, Hugh Peterson and Anne Kaufold-Wiggins Present at Annual Georgia Electric Membership Cooperative (EMC) Counsel Conference

Josh Archer, Brooke Gram, Hugh Peterson and Anne Kaufold-Wiggins, partners in the firm’s Atlanta office and members of the Litigation Practice, were featured speakers at the 2021 Georgia EMC Counsel Conference in early June.

Hugh and Anne’s presentation on easements explored the best practices for obtaining and maintaining easements, and the process of proving prescriptive easements.

Josh and Brooke’s presentation, “Pole Attachments in Georgia” focused on rates, terms and conditions as well as newly adopted Public Service Commission (PSC) regulations. Also, addressed were the differences between Pole Attachment Agreements and Joint Use Agreements, HB 244, Wireless Agreements with major carriers, and how PSC Regulation will affect pole attachment revenue moving forward.

Electric membership cooperatives (EMCs) are member-owned, not-for-profit utilities that serve approximately 4.4 million of Georgia’s 10 million residents and 73 percent of the state’s land area. The EMC’s mission is to provide leadership and unity through advocacy, education, and communications.

As the managing partner of Balch’s Atlanta office, Josh Archer directs a litigation team who handle a variety of business disputes involving commercial, employment, intellectual property, and other claims. This team approach is effective in handling single party and class action suits. Josh represents business interests in cases proceeding in state and federal courts including personal injury, property damage, product liability, commercial contractual disputes, and eminent domain condemnation cases on behalf of utility clients.

Brooke Gram concentrates her practice in commercial litigation. She has extensive experience with matters pertaining to commercial and contract disputes, the acquisition of property rights and property litigation, and construction disputes. She also has experience litigating civil and commercial matters pertaining to transportation and logistics, as well as complex torts. She regularly represents clients on appellate matters both in state and federal appellate courts.

Hugh Peterson focuses on defending wrongful death, personal injury and property damage claims. Hugh has tried numerous bench trials and jury trials in multiple jurisdictions in Georgia. He has defended catastrophic claims related to electrocution, automobile accidents, trucking accidents, premises liability, and fire loss and flooding. He has represented both customer and investor-owned utilities in a wide range of matters both at the trial court and appellate levels.  

Anne Kaufold-Wiggins specializes in representing electric utilities in all forms of litigation. She also counsels utility clients on policy matters including corporate governance, new technology, and pole attachment and joint use issues. Anne’s objective is to minimize the intrusion of litigation, allowing clients to focus on their businesses. Anne invests in understanding those businesses and strategically partnering with clients to minimize risks.