Bill # and Title: HB 1050 – Small Cell Wireless Structures
Author: Rep. David Ober (R-Albion)
Summary: Provides that the definition of “wireless support structure” does not include a utility pole owned or operated by: (1) a public utility; (2) a municipality; (3) an electric membership corporation; or (4) a rural electric cooperative. Does include wireless carriers. Provides that with respect to the construction, placement or use of small cell facilities and associated supporting structures, a permit authority may prohibit the placement of a new wireless support structure in a right-of-way within an area that is designated before May 1, 2017, strictly for underground or buried utilities, if the area was zoned for residential use before May 1, 2017. Removes a requirement that a permit authority’s prohibition on placement of utility poles and wireless support structures be applied in a non-discriminatory manner. Makes conforming changes.
Chamber Position: Support (as amended)
Status: Heard in the Senate Commerce and Technology Committee and passed 9-1; now up for consideration by the full Senate.

Update/Chamber Action: The Chamber was one of several entities that testified in support of the measure this week. The bill’s author, Rep. Ober, had skillfully achieved a good compromise with the legislation while in the House. The bill appears on course to pass and proceed with the intent of last year’s SB 213 – streamline the permitting process for small cell equipment – by repairing the consequences from a language drafting error on a conference committee report.

Resource: R. Mark Lawrance at (317) 264-7547 or email: