House Bill 310 was signed into law late last month to enable the installation of 5G broadband across the state of North Carolina, reported the Lincoln Times-News. Initially proposed in November 2016, the bill passed with a unanimous vote in the Senate and a 107-7 vote in the House.
The bill, which includes several key infrastructure reforms, makes way for 5G networks that use small cell equipment rather than large cell towers. According to Lincoln County StateRep. Jason Saine who crafted the measure, “This bill is vital to paving the way for investing in the wireless communications infrastructure needed to enable the next generation of technologies and innovations North Carolina consumers demand.” Saine added, “The mobile and internet-based technologies of today are quickly changing the way we keep our communities connected. To ensure that citizens do not get left behind and continue to have access to next generation mobile broadband networks and integrated technology, it is critical that we continue evolving public policy to encourage the deployment of modern communications infrastructure. This bill is just another step in that evolution.”
Saine worked with the wireless industry, North Carolina League of Municipalities and other interested stakeholders in support of the bill. The approved legislation allows for the efficient deployment of 5G wireless infrastructure by benefitting all parties involved – the cities can obtain fees from wireless companies and the North Carolina Department of Transportation will issue permits to wireless companies to occupy utility poles.