Agenda Item #

Columbus Consolidated Government

Council Meeting

07/12/2016

Agenda Report #


TO: Mayor and Council

SUBJECT: Moratorium For Small Cell Technology

INITIATED BY: Planning Department



Recommendation: Adopt the ordinance establishing a moratorium for 120 days on the issuance of any permits for small cell technology until an ordinance governing the placement and construction of such can be adopted

Background: Mini-/micro-cell or "small cell" wireless technology refers to smaller, low-power wireless telecommunications antennas typically installed on existing structures or poles. Use of this type of infrastructure provides the ability to fill in gaps in coverage and boost network capacity for cell phones, while eliminating the need for large monopoles. In recent months, staff has seen a considerable interest in the placement of these antennas within the city right of way. Under Georgia code 46-5-1, telephone and telegraph services, including small cells, are allowed to place such equipment within the right of way, provided the city grants approval.

Analysis: The placement of these telecommunication antennas in the city's right of way requires additional review and coordination by city staff. While they are allowed in the right of way by state law, there still needs to consideration towards the location, safety and anesthetics of such equipment. Staff is asking for a moratorium for the issuance of any permits for small cell telecommunication antennas within city right of way for 120 days. The granting of such will allow staff the time to develop a review process that allows for the proper installation of these facilities, while protecting the appropriate use of the city's right of way.

Financial Considerations: Under state law, the city may charge a fee for the review of any permits associated with the location of these antennas within the right of way.

Projected Annual Fiscal Impact Statement: There are no projected fiscal impacts associated with this action.

Legal Considerations: The City Attorney has reviewed and approved this action.

Recommendations/ Actions: Adopt the ordinance establishing a moratorium for 120 days on the issuance of any permits for small cell technology until an ordinance governing the placement and construction of such can be adopted