In 2017, the Colorado General Assembly passed legislation limiting in certain respects local government control over small cell wireless facilities in the public rights-of-way. Fourteen months later, the Federal Communications Commission adopted its own new rules which, although claiming not to significantly preempt state small cell laws, then went on to adopt multiple provisions directly in conflict with Colorado’s legislation. The FCC rules are being challenged in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. This session will suggest various ways local governments can best comply with the Federal and State regulatory landscape, assert the regulatory control still available to preserve the aesthetics of our communities, address the status of the legal challenge to the FCC rules, and will also describe what one Colorado city is doing to manage small cell deployment as it navigates these legal hurdles.
Founded in 1923, the Colorado Municipal League is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization providing services and resources to assist municipal officials in managing their governments and serving the cities and towns of Colorado.