Broadband Communities

MAR-APR 2018

BROADBAND COMMUNITIES is the leading source of information on digital and broadband technologies for buildings and communities. Our editorial aims to accelerate the deployment of Fiber-To-The-Home and Fiber-To-The-Premises.

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BROADBAND POLICY 4 4 | B R O A D B A N D C O M M U N I T I E S | w w w. b r o a d b a n d c o m m u n i t i e s . c o m | M A R C H / A P R I L 2 0 1 8 Local Governments Are Not Barriers To 5G Deployment In March, 36 local elected officials from Next Century Cities member communities sent the following letter to the FCC in defense of local decision-making for 5G investments, small-cell deployment and the use of public rights-of-way. Dear Chairman Pai and Commissioners Clyburn, O'Rielly, Carr, and Rosenworcel: A s the Federal Communications Commission seeks to improve investment in fast, affordable and reliable internet access across the United States, it should focus on the barriers that have prevented innovative providers from investing in promising solutions aimed at achieving a robust competitive market. Unfortunately, the commission currently seems more focused on limiting local decision- making and oversight than on tackling the larger barriers that are discouraging new broadband investment. at is why we, the undersigned 36 mayors and municipal government leaders, are calling for the support of the FCC as we seek to expedite the expansion of 5G infrastructure in our communities. We believe, and our experience validates, that the most effective means to expedite progress is to encourage collaboration between industry and municipalities. As mayors, we feel that some commissioners have wrongly cast local governments as a main barrier to next-generation wireless deployments, using us as a scapegoat for larger issues. For instance, Commissioner O'Rielly said, "We are going to need to preempt those localities that are either trying to extract a bounty in terms of profit that they think there's an opportunity to extract from wireless providers and therefore consumers, or that has a process that will delay and belabor the deployment of technology." It's ridiculous to claim that our cities are seeking a "bounty" or the delay of deployments that are important for our citizens. In fact, our communities strongly desire more options for high-quality internet access, and we are happy to work collaboratively with any ISPs that are willing to provide such opportunities. However, our residents and businesses appropriately balk at the placement of a 100-foot monopole on their lawn with no recourse, or to having their local government's hands tied when it comes to the public recovering just compensation for the use of the public's right of way. In addition, some commissioners have wrongfully suggested that local governments are slowing investment in 5G and other small-cell technologies. We are writing to the commission to strongly state that we as city leaders are focused on deploying these technologies in ways that uniquely fit our communities and residents' needs. "We as city leaders are focused on deploying these technologies in ways that uniquely fit our communities and residents' needs."

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