FCC Releases Order Streamlining State/Local Approval of Wireless Equipment Modifications Under Section 6409

On November 3, 2020, the Commission released the Report and Order (“R&O”) adopting revisions to the Commission’s rules to further streamline state and local government review of modifications to existing wireless infrastructure under Section 6409(a) of the Spectrum Act of 2012 (WT Docket No. 19-250).  This item was adopted at the October Open Meeting.


The adopted R&O incorporates the following relevant changes from the circulated draft version:

  • The Commission adds in support from the record asserting that the deployment of transmission equipment within the expanded 30-foot area will be limited, and that construction within a 30-foot perimeter of an existing site would not result in substantial changes to the physical footprint of existing sites (¶ 18).
  • The Commission addresses recent concerns from localities opposed to revising the Commission’s “substantial change” definition, and declines to make changes to that definition, noting that its definition is supported by laws in other states as well (¶¶ 19-23).
  • The Commission clarifies that changes in zoning regulations since the last local government review would not disqualify compound expansions that otherwise would be permitted under the Commission’s revisions from section 6409(a) treatment (¶ 33).


The R&O will be effective 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.


Please Contact Us if you have any questions.

Recent Posts