Ada County Highway District

News and Press Releases Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Commission Votes Against Small Cell Ordinance

Today (Wednesday, June 3rd), Ada County Highway District voted 3-2 to not pass Ordinance 244, a new policy section which would have established standards and requirements for the placement of small cell wireless facilities within the public right-of-way.

Because ACHD is bound by federal law to allow small cell providers the ability to place their facilities within the right-of-way, the failure of this ordinance means that the agency will not be able to avail any of the protections that the ordinance provided.

Several members of the public took part in the two-hour Zoom meeting, all of whom touted health and environmental concerns regarding the use of 5G technology. ACHD's legal counsel made it clear that the issue at hand was not about the safety of the technology (or lack thereof) or the placement of the small cell facilities in proximity to residential areas, schools, etc. - those are land-use decisions to be determined by city and county jurisdictions.

Over the past two years, ACHD has entered into license agreements with several wireless carriers and the demand continues to grow. The agency currently has more than 80 license agreements in process.

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Shandy Lam
Deputy Director of Communications

Christy Foltz-Ahlrichs
Sr. Communications Specialist


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