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RSVP for CTIA Conference and Webinar: New Developments in Tower Siting Law

CTIA is sponsoring a conference and teleconference/webinar on Friday, April 20, highlighting important new developments in tower siting law and regulation.

One of the key goals of federal policymakers is to promote wireless broadband build-out, and the Administration, Congress and the FCC have recognized that this cannot be achieved without expeditious tower siting. This CTIA conference will  discuss the recent accomplishments of both Congress and the FCC, and how the wireless industry can use these new tools to further streamline build-out at both the federal and local levels.

Registration (free for CTIA members; $100 for non-members) is required to attend either in person (CTIA's offices, 1400 16th Street NW Suite #600, D.C.) or via webinar. Please send your name, company, email address and phone number to ctiamedrel@ctia.org.

Friday, April 20 Program Agenda:

11:45 a.m. - Registration
Noon - Lunch
12:30 p.m. - Section 6409 of the TRA – An Important New Tool for Wireless Facilities Siting

Andrew McBride, Josh Turner and Megan Brown from Wiley Rein LLP, Washington, DC

Section 6409 of the recently enacted Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, (“TRA”), offers wireless carriers a critical new tool for wireless facilities siting.  Section 6409 contains an express command that state and local governments “may not deny, and shall approve” facilities requests for collocations and modifications that do not “substantially change” the physical dimensions of the existing facility. Though its purpose is clear and its mandate is sweeping, future application of this mandate raises potentially complex legal and practical issues in dealings with local governments.

Section 6409 also addresses access to federal property for wireless siting by granting federal agencies the authority to offer easements to wireless carriers and by requiring the U.S. General Services Administration to adopt a common form of application for access to federal property by wireless providers. The GSA’s approach may have a lasting impact on federal wireless policy and government action at the state and local level.

Wiley Rein attorneys Andrew McBride, Josh Turner and Megan Brown have litigated preemption issues, including tower siting and other access disputes, for years, repeatedly securing important victories for the industry. In their presentation, they will shed light on some of the interpretive questions, practical issues and strategic considerations implicated by Section 6409 of the TRA.

1:30 pm - Recent FCC Actions to Facilitate Wireless Facility Siting

William J. Sill from Wilkinson Barker & Knauer LLP

The FCC has stated that one of its infrastructure policy goals is to promote broadband build-out. Unfortunately, at the very time that it seeks to promote broadband build-out, the FCC is wrestling with issues such as migratory birds and historical preservation review which could endanger the very concept of expeditious broadband build-out. The FCC recently has taken several positive steps, including establishing the Shot Clock requested by CTIA, adopting Interim ASR rules, issuing the Programmatic Environmental Assessment, and instituting the Broadband Acceleration Rulemaking. However, much remains to be done by the FCC. As the primary federal regulator of telecommunications facilities, the FCC has the ability to create new regulations, interpret existing policies and regulations as well as provide context for Congress’s newly minted ‘collocation by right’ principle.

Wilkinson Barker attorney Bill Sill will discuss both the FCC’s recent accomplishments and the challenge before the industry — namely, how to marshal the FCC’s resources and expertise to further streamline broadband build-out at both the federal and local levels.

2:30 pm - Adjourn

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