Council approves wireless update

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SHERIDAN — An ordinance through the city of Sheridan outlining regulations for wireless communication has been updated to reflect most recent federal regulations.

Sheridan City Council approved and adopted Ordinance 2184 in March 2018, which outlined important aspects of telecommunication codes.

“The city has been able to keep pace with this ever-changing industry by establishing forward-leaning policies and regulations that provide a clear, fair process to service providers while protecting the interests of the community,” an April 15 memo presented to council said.

Initially when the ordinance was being considered by council, presenters encouraged unique ways of adding wireless access throughout the city — and especially on Main Street — in a fashionable, unobtrusive manner by making wireless poles look identical to the classic lighting poles already lining all of the street. New Federal Communications Commission regulations were enacted Jan. 14, 2019, and city council once again looked at the ordinance to maintain compliance with federal regulations while also considering the needs of the city. Regulations on size and structures in which wireless contraptions are installed were updated, now requiring structures 50 feet or less in height, including antennas, or no more than 10 percent taller than adjacent structures, whichever is greater. Wireless facilities cannot be located on tribal land and cannot expose humans to radiofrequency radiation in excess of the federal safety standards.

The most extensive addition to the new ordinance — No. 2199 — allows for small wireless facilities to be collocated under the stipulation of a “shot clock review.”

The review allows 60 days for the city to review an application, approve or deny and advise the applicant of its final decision. The 60 days begin when the application is filed, and the city must notify the applicant within 10 days if they have submitted an incomplete application.

For new structures unattached to existing ones, the city has 90 days to complete the review and respond to the applicant.

The new ordinance was approved unanimously by council Monday with no further discussion on the matter on its final reading.

By |Apr. 18, 2019|

About the Author:

Ashleigh Fox joined The Sheridan Press in October 2016 as the public safety and city government reporter before moving into the managing editor position in November 2018. She is a native of Colorado and graduated from Biola University in Los Angeles, CA. Before working in Sheridan, she worked as a sports editor for the Sidney Herald in Sidney, Montana. Email Ashleigh at: ashleigh.fox@thesheridanpress.com

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