On Wednesday, February 12, 2020, the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau (“Bureau”) released a Public Notice (“Notice”) seeking comment on ways to improve and modernize FCC Forms 620 and 621, which are used to notify State Historic Preservation Officers (“SHPOs”), Tribal Historic Preservation Officers (“THPOs”), other officials of Tribal Nations, and Native Hawaiian Organizations (“NHOs”) of proposed wireless infrastructure projects (WT Docket No. 20-39). The Commission reviews these forms to assess the potential effects of proposed new towers and proposed collocations on historic-preservation properties under the National Historic Preservation Act (“NHPA”).

Specifically, the Bureau seeks comment on whether to modify the forms’ format, instructions, or overall organization so as to improve the application and review process. The Bureau also asks whether any potential changes would make these forms more suitable for review of small cell facilities deployment, in connection with 5G-related technologies and services. Proposed modifications include: (i) requirements for identifying applicants and consultants; (ii) the level of required specificity when describing site locations; (iii) specific information about proposed deployments; and (iv) information about historic properties. Additionally, the Bureau seeks comment on if local reviewers could more effectively assess the potential impact of groups of similar proposed deployments within a geographic area if all the deployments were presented in a single consolidated submission.

Comments are due March 13, 2020.

Reply Comments are due March 28, 2020.

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