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Published on Friday, March 10, 2017

Small cell telecommunications bill fails to move out of the Senate

After a flurry of lobbying, amendment writing, press reporting, and wrangling amongst senators, SB 5711 never came up for a vote on the floor of the Senate before the “House of Origin” cutoff at 5 pm on March 8. AWC, individual cities and other local governments had expressed their strong opposition to the bill because it preempted local authority. Senators Carlyle and Sheldon were prepared to offer amendments on the floor that would have made the bill much more palatable for cities.

Now SB 5711 is technically dead, but this is not the end. There is interest from many parties in trying to move something forward to facilitate deployment of more telecommunications infrastructure including small cells. Just recently, the Governor’s office called a meeting to try to find a way to facilitate increased broadband access for rural areas. AWC will continue to stay engaged on this issue to make sure that cities retain their ability to balance community interests with the need for new telecommunications infrastructure.

Categories: Telecommunications