This is a humorous situation one faces living a day in the life of a California Electrician.
In lieu of the recent 16x16 addition on a residential project, the existing 100 amp meter/combo did not meet the required 36" of horizontal working space. As a result, the homeowner wanted to take the opportunity and upgrade to a 200 amp service and relocate it to the Northwest corner of the addition. The new upgraded service is about 18' away from the existing one that currently feeds the residence.
The installation is complete in order to energize and transfer the load from the existing to the new, so I thought.
The local authority came out, checked the work, but said I wasn't ready for him to "Release Power" since I hadn't energized the new service yet.
I was then instructed to cut the Service Laterals feeding the existing service - at the point of attachment and jumper them to the upgraded service 18' away. I also needed to jumper between the line side of the upgraded meter's vertical contacts to temporarily feed the service until the utility company can permanently install the meter. At one point I was told, once I cut the energized Service Laterals (from the Utility side) I could even "wrap" the conductors around the large tree branch nearby to relieve the triplex conductor's tension. And the conductors I was to use for this jumper could be left on the roof until everything was switched over.
Don't worry - I've simplified the whole process with a few phone calls. Wouldn't you know that it may just be easier for the Utility company to move there own laterals, ONCE, rather than adding jumpers here and there to end up with the same result. Sometimes I worry - a lot about what goes on out there and is deemed acceptable.
That's my story for today, I'd be interested in hearing about some of the 'other' situations taking place out there.
It sounds like your AHJ is off his/her rocker. "Releasing Power" is generally an acknowledgement that the service is ready to be energized. (I had an AHJ that wouldn't give us a final or release power until he saw "everything running". It was hard to convince him that the 277/480 3Ø system wouldn't work off of the 120/240 temp service. He made me rent a generator...and I'm still mad)...S