Monday, September 23, 2019

Verizon Seeks Relief from Excessive Small Cell Fees

By Leslie Stimson, Inside Towers Washington Bureau Chief

Some telecoms are pushing back at what they consider exorbitant fees to site small cells in a public right-of-way. Verizon recently sought relief from the FCC to settle a dispute with Clark County, Nevada.

The carrier sought a declaratory ruling from the agency, arguing the fees prohibit the provision of telecom services because they do not, “reasonably approximate the county’s actual costs,” are not limited to the county’s “reasonable costs,” and are discriminatory. Verizon asked the FCC to declare that the county may not charge recurring fees that exceed the reasonable annual rate of $270, as set forth in the agency’s Small Cell Declaratory Ruling.

Verizon told the FCC it tried, “numerous and prolonged attempts to negotiate” with Clark County, but was not able to do so. That’s why it turned to the Commission. The carrier has deployed 418 wireless facilities in the county, including 99 small cells. But it wants to deploy “hundreds” of small cells over the next three years to upgrade its 4G network and layer on 5G. Verizon said in a statement, “deploying within the county rights-of-way and on county-owned assets is key to that effort.” Continue Reading

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