FCC 5G Order on Small Cell Antennas in Streets and on City Lands
This program covers the FCC 5G Order that took effect this year to speed the rollout of 5G cell service. The Order significantly affects small cell antennas in the streets and rights of way, leases for cell towers on municipal property generally, shot clocks, and the fees that can be charged for cell tower zoning and permitting. The Order covers all cell sites nationwide (not just 5G) by preempting state and local laws and practices which the FCC views as hindering cellular deployment.
The webinar will cover the Order, the current, fully briefed 9th Cirucuit court challenge to the Order – – and practical advice on what municipalities should do in response. In addition, we will describe 5G service, its’ pro’s and con’s, and why it will not be widely available soon – – with pictures of various 5G installations.
Briefly, under the Order:
- All government approvals required for a small cell site in the streets must be granted within the applicable shot clock (60 days or 90 days).
- The 90 day shot clock applies to new small cells on new and entirely replaced structures in the rights of way. It also applies to colocations of larger antennas on any existing structure.
- There is an FCC-determined presumptive cap on the recovery of fees for small cell applications in the right of way, with the cap covering all fees (building permits, curb cut, etc.), not just zoning fees. Generally, there is a $500 safe harbor for an application to cover up to 5 sites and $100 for each additional site. The cap/safe harbor also apply to small cells on municipal property located outside the rights of way, not just to those in the rights of way.
- There is a new 60-day shot clock (90 days for new or entirely replaced poles) to act on applications to attach antennas to traffic lights, light poles or utility poles.
- Aesthetic requirements for many small cell sites are restricted, and undergrounding is generally sharply limited with some exceptions.
Speakers: John Pestle & Jonathan Kramer