Oppose Wireless Bill Gutting Local Authority Over Siting of Cell Towers – Delegates and Senators to Cast Final Votes this Week

February 28, 2018

Oppose gutting of local authority to address siting of wireless towers
This bad measure, HB 1258 (Kilgore) and SB 405 (McDougle), guts local zoning authority to address the siting of wireless towers. Specifically, they allow wireless companies to place cell towers up to 50 feet tall within rights-of-way without local control. Additionally, for towers of greater height, the bill hamstrings localities’ ability to obtain information and address citizen concerns through the public hearing process. HB 1258 passed by a vote of 56 to 41 and is on the Senate floor with a final vote as early as tomorrow March 1. SB 405 passed by a vote of 22 to 13 and will likely be scheduled for a final vote on Friday March 2.

ACTION REQUIRED – Contact your legislators now to oppose this gutting of local authority to address the siting of wireless towers.

KEY POINTS

  • This legislation will not expand wireless service to rural and underserved areas as there is no requirement to build or provide service in these areas.
  • This measure allows a wireless structure up to 50 feet in height to be placed within rights-of-way without local control.
  • These provisions remove the ability of our citizens to have meaningful input over the character of their communities. Local zoning recognizes the importance of citizen input.

KEY CONTACTS

General Assembly Members

VACo Contact: Joe Lerch, AICP

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