Leon Valley
TX

Ordinance
Ordinance 17-064

Discussion, Presentation, and Possible Action to Approve an Ordinance Amending Leon Valley Code of Ordinances Chapter 14 Utilities, Article 14.10 Telecommunications, to Create a Division 3 Small Wireless Facility, to Regulate Small Cell Node Wireless Facilities in Public Rights of Way and Appendix A Fee Schedule, Article A2.000 Administrative Fees, Section A2.010 Use of Public Rights-of-Way by Telecommunications Facilities, to Add (c) Small Wireless Facility Permit Fees

Information

Department:Community DevelopmentSponsors:
Category:Policy

Attachments

  1. Printout
  2. Wireless Services Small Cell Design Manual 2017 (This file has not yet been converted to a viewable format)
  3. PPT Small Cell Facilities 9-19-17

Item Discussion

PURPOSE

 

The purpose of this M & C is to amend the Leon Valley Code of Ordinances, Chapter 14 Utilities, Article 14.10 Telecommunications, to create a Division 4 Small Wireless Facility,  to regulate Small Cell Node Wireless Facilities in public right of ways and Appendix A Fee Schedule, Article A2.000 Administrative Fees, Section A2.010 Use of Public Rights-of-Way by Telecommunications Facilities, to add (c) Small Wireless Facility Fees, along with the adoption of an accompanying design manual to allow, collect fees, and uniformly regulate small cell node wireless facilities in our public right of ways.

 

The City recently received a request from Mobilitie, LLC to install a small cell network node wireless infrastructure throughout the City, by placing small cell nodes, and related equipment, on the City Public Service poles and on three 50 foot tall free-standing poles in the right of ways throughout the City. These poles are to be located on Daughtry Drive at the HEB shopping center, on Wurzbach across from the SAWS water plant, and one on Huebner in front of the DPS facility (across from the entrance to Pavona Place subdivision). These small cell facilities will provide high-speed, high capacity bandwidth, and increased mobile connectivity to service the residents, businesses, and visitors to the City.

 

There had been some confusion and controversy as to whether or not these companies had to sign franchise agreements with cities, but these facilities are different from regular telecommunications. The other question was how much to charge for using our right of way. 

 

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is an independent government agency responsible for regulating the radio, television and phone industries. The FCC regulates all interstate communications, such as wire, satellite and cable, and international communications originating or terminating in the United States. These small cell nodes pass along the cell or wireless signal, but they can’t be used as a phone and they don’t broadcast - they just boost the signal.

 

Small cell network nodes are standalone individual items, like miniature cell towers but without the tower. Like towers, a small cell requires both an antenna and equipment. Unlike towers though, the wireless industry likes to place the transmission equipment on the utility or other support structures. In effect, this means that the installation of small cells must either increase the visual blight of the pole or increase the diameter of the pole if the equipment is put inside.

 

The state legislature recently updated Texas Local Government Code; Chapter 284 to include these small cell facilities and the law allows cities to regulate the providers and to collect an inspection, review, and annual fee per network node. The new language also states that the city may not give exclusive rights to any one provider for the use of the right of way. Since the receipt of Mobilitie, LLC’s applications, the City has received an additional request from ATT for these same facilities.

 

The Texas Local Government Code, Chapter 284. “Deployment of Network Nodes in Public Right-of-Way” supports the legislative intent that Ch. 284 is to be the statewide, uniform application for installations of wireless network nodes in the right of ways, controlling over any other common-law or statutory authority.

 

The attached ordinance establishes policies and procedures, based on the newly updated law. The attached manual gives design standards for these facilities.

 

SEE LEON VALLEY

 

Social - According to the State Legislature, network nodes are instrumental to increasing access to advanced technology and information to the citizens of this state and thereby further an important public policy of having reliable wireless networks and services.

 

Economic - Expeditious processes and reasonable and nondiscriminatory terms, conditions, and compensation for use of the public right-of-way for network node deployments are essential to state-of-the-art wireless services and thereby further an important public policy of having reliable wireless networks and services. Network nodes help ensure that Texas remains competitive in the global economy.

 

Environmental - These nodes are typically placed on already existing infrastructure, unless the distance between the nodes is too great. Using existing infrastructure reduces the need for additional poles, which clutter the visual impact of our city.

 

FISCAL IMPACT

 

The City will collect $500 for the first five nodes, and then $250.00 for each additional node in the same application, and a fee of $1000 for each node support pole, and finally a charge of $250 annually per network node installed.

 

Document Comments

RECOMMENDATION

 

Approve an Ordinance Amending Leon Valley Code of Ordinances Chapter 14 Utilities, Article 14.10 Telecommunications, to Create a Division 4 Small Wireless Facility,  to Regulate Small Cell Node Wireless Facilities in Public Rights of Way; and amend Appendix A Fee Schedule, Article A2.000 Administrative Fees, Section A2.010 Use of public rights-of-way by telecommunications facilities, to Add (c) Small Wireless Facility Permit Fees.

 

Body

AN ORDINANCE AMENDING THE LEON VALLEY CODE OF ORDINANCES CHAPTER 14 UTILITES, ARTICLE 14.10 TELECOMMUNICATIONS, TO CREATE A DIVISION 4 SMALL WIRELESS FACILITY,  ESTABLISHING STANDARDS FOR NETWORK NODES AND NODE SUPPORT POLES IN THE PUBLIC RIGHT-OF-WAYS; AND AMEND APPENDIX A FEE SCHEDULE, ARTICLE A2.000 ADMINISTRATIVE FEES, SECTION A2.010 USE OF PUBLIC RIGHTS OF WAY BY TELECOMMUNICATIONS FACILITIES, TO ADD (c) SMALL WIRELESS FACILITY PERMIT FEES; AND TO ADOPT  A WIRELESS SERVICES (SMALL CELL) DESIGN MANUAL.

WHEREAS, the City of Leon Valley (“City”) seeks to encourage wireless infrastructure investment by providing a fair, reasonable, and predictable process for the deployment of network nodes and node support poles, while managing the public right-of-ways in the overall interests of the public health, safety and welfare; and

WHEREAS, it is necessary to fully comply with and implement Chapter 284 of the Texas Local Government Code and comply with federal law to the extent it preempts local control.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED by the City Council of the City of Leon Valley that the Leon Valley Code of Ordinances is hereby amended as follows:

SECTION I.

ARTICLE 14.10 TELECOMMUNICATIONS*

“Division 4 Small cell wireless facilities

Sec. 14.10.105 Purpose and Scope

 

(A)              Purpose.  The purpose of this Chapter is to establish rules and regulations for the placement of node support poles in the right-of -way and network nodes in the public right-of-way and on service poles within the City’s jurisdiction, which will provide public benefits and will be consistent with the preservation of the integrity, safe usage, and visual qualities of the City public right-of-way and the City as a whole. 

(B)              Intent.  In enacting this Chapter, the City is establishing uniform standards to address issues presented by network nodes, including without limitation, ensuring that network nodes or node support poles do not adversely affect, 

(1)              use of streets, sidewalks, alleys, parkways and other public ways and places;

(2)              vehicular and pedestrian traffic;

(3)              the operation of facilities lawfully located in public right-of-ways or public property;

(4)              the ability of the City to protect the environment, including the prevention of damage to trees;

(5)              the character of residential and historic areas, and city parks, in which network nodes may be installed; and

(6)               the rapid deployment of network nodes to provide the benefits of wireless services; and

(7)               the use of radio waves used by licensed Hertz-Armstrong-Marconi (HAM) radio operators.

(C)              Conflicts with Other Chapters.  This Chapter supersedes all Chapters, parts of Chapters or rules adopted prior hereto that are in conflict herewith, to the extent of such conflict.

Section 14.10.106 Definitions

All terms used in this Chapter, not specifically defined herein, have the meaning provided in Chapter 284 of the Texas Local Government Code.

(A)              “City Code” means those ordinance provisions relevant to use of the public right-of-way where compliant with applicable law.

(B)              “Applicable Law” means Chapter 284 of the Texas Local Government Code.

(C)              “Applicant” means any person who submits an application and is a network provider.

(D)              “Application” means a request submitted by an applicant (i) for a permit to collocate network nodes; or (ii) to install a transport facility; or (iii) approve the installation, replacement or modification of a pole. 

(E)              “Day” means calendar day.

(F)              “Person” means an individual, corporation, limited liability company, partnership, association, trust, or other entity or organization, including the City.  

(G)              “Routine Maintenance” means (i) work in the public right-of-way that does not require excavation or closing of sidewalks or vehicular lanes in a public right-of-way; (ii)  replacing or upgrading a network node or pole with a node or pole that is substantially similar in size or smaller and that does not require excavation or closing of sidewalks or vehicular lanes in a public right-of-way; or (iii) the installation, placement, maintenance, operation, or replacement of micro network nodes that are strung on cables between existing poles or node support poles, in the public right-of-way.

(H)              “Technical Grounds” means, in light of prevailing industry and engineering standards, reasons of insufficiency of capacity, safety, reliability and/or generally applicable engineering purposes consistent with applicable law and City Code.

(I)              “Zoning Code” means the Leon Valley Code of Ordinances Chapter 15 Zoning.

Section 14.10.107 Permitted Use; Application and Fees

(A)              Permitted Use:  Collocation of network nodes and the placement of node support poles, meeting the parameters set forth in Section 5 below and in applicable law, shall be a permitted use.  No zoning or land use review shall apply, subject to the requirements in Section 5.  

(B)              Permit Required.  No person shall place a network node, transport facility or node support pole in the public right-of-ways, without first filing a permit application and obtaining a permit therefore, except as otherwise provided in this Chapter.

 

(C)              Permit Application.  All permit applications filed pursuant to this Chapter shall be on a form, paper or electronic, provided by the City. The Applicant may designate portions of its application materials that it reasonably believes contain proprietary or confidential information as “proprietary” or “confidential” by clearly marking each page of such materials accordingly.

 

(D)     Application Requirements.  The permit application shall be made by the network provider or it’s duly authorized representative and shall contain the following:

(1)              The Applicant’s name, address, telephone number, and e-mail address.

(2)              The names, addresses, telephone numbers, and e-mail addresses of all               consultants, if any, acting on behalf of the Applicant with respect to the filing of the application.

(3)                Construction and engineering drawings and information confirming that the construction will be consistent with City Code.

(E)              Routine Maintenance and Replacement. A permit application shall not be required for:  (i) routine maintenance; or for (ii) the replacement of a node with another node that is substantially similar. 

(F)              Information Updates.  Any amendment to information contained in a permit application shall be submitted in writing to the City within 30 days after the change necessitating the amendment.

(G)              Application Fees.  All applications for permits pursuant to this Chapter shall be accompanied by fees as prescribed in Leon Valley City Code Appendix A Schedule of Fees.

Section 14.10.108 Action on Permit Applications

(A)              Review of Applications.  The City shall review applications for network nodes, node support poles and transport facilities in light of their conformity with applicable law and City Code and shall issue such permits on nondiscriminatory terms and conditions subject to the following requirements:

(a)              Within 30 days of receiving an application for a network node or node support pole, or 10 days for a transport facility, the City shall determine and notify the Applicant whether the application is complete; or if incomplete, the City must specifically identify the missing information in such notification. There shall be no fee charged for completion and re-submittal of an application.

(b)              The City shall make its final decision to approve or deny a complete application no later than (i) 21 days after receipt of a complete application for a transport facility, (ii) 60 days after receipt of a complete application for a network node; and (iii) 150 days after receipt of a completed application for a new node support pole. 

(c)              The City shall advise the Applicant in writing of its final decision, and, if denied, the basis for that denial, including specific provisions of City Code or applicable law on which the denial was based, and send the documentation to the Applicant on or before the day the City denies the application. The Applicant may cure the deficiencies identified by the City and resubmit the application within 30 days of the denial without paying an additional application fee. The City shall approve or deny the revised application within 90 days of receipt of the amended application. The subsequent review by the City shall be limited to the deficiencies cited in the original denial. 

(d)              If the City fails to act on an application within the review period specified in this Section 4, the application shall be deemed approved.

(e)              An applicant seeking to collocate network nodes may, at the Applicant’s discretion, file a consolidated application and receive permits for up to 30 network nodes. Provided however, the City’s denial of any node within a single application shall not affect other nodes submitted in the same application. The City shall grant permits for any and all nodes in a single application that it does not deny, subject to the requirements of this Section.

(B)              Review of Eligible Facilities Requests.  Notwithstanding any other provision of this Chapter, the City shall approve and may not deny applications for eligible facilities requests within sixty (60) days according to the procedures established under 47 CFR 1.40001(c).

 

Section 14.10.109 Network Nodes in the Public right-of-way; Maximum Height; Other Requirements

(A)              Maximum Size of Permitted Use.  Collocation of permitted use network nodes in the public right-of-way shall be subject to the size limitations specified in Chapter 284.003 of the Texas Local Government Code.

(B)              Undergrounding Provisions.  A network provider shall comply with nondiscriminatory undergrounding requirements, including the Leon Valley Code of Ordinances, subdivision regulations, zoning regulations, state law, private deed restrictions, and other public or private restrictions, that prohibit installing aboveground structures in a public right-of-way without first obtaining zoning or land use approval.  This requirement or restriction shall not be interpreted to prohibit a network provider from replacing an existing structure.

(C)              Historic Areas and Design Districts. Subject to the permit application approval time frames in Section 14.10.108, a network provider must obtain advance approval from the City before collocating new network nodes or installing new node support poles in any areas zoned or designated as a historic district or as a Gateway or Sustainability Overlay zoning district, as designated by the official zoning map of the City, if such district has or requires decorative poles. Such installations shall be subject to the design and aesthetic standards of such areas.

(D)              Installation in Municipal Parks and Residential Areas.  A network provider may not install a new node support pole in a public right-of-way without the City’s discretionary, nondiscriminatory, written consent of the Community Development and Public Works Department if the public right-of-way is located in a municipal park or is adjacent to a street or thoroughfare that is 1) not more than 50 feet wide; and 2) adjacent to single-family residential lots or other multifamily residences or undeveloped land that is designated for residential use by zoning or deed restrictions. A network provider shall comply with private deed restrictions and other private restrictions when installing network nodes in parks and residential areas.

(E)              Zoning.  A network provider seeking to construct, replace or modify a pole or node in the public right-of-way that exceeds the height or size limits contained in this section, shall be subject to applicable zoning requirements.

Section 14.10.110 Effect of Permit

(A)              Authority Granted. A permit from the City authorizes an applicant to undertake only certain activities in accordance with this Chapter, and does not create a property right or grant authority to the Applicant to impinge upon the rights of others who may already have an interest in the public right-of-way.

(B)              Time of Installation.  A network provider shall begin the installation for which a permit is granted not later than six months after final approval and shall diligently pursue the installation to completion. Provided, however, the City may place a longer time limit on completion or grant reasonable extensions of time as requested by the network provider. 

(C)              Right to Occupy.  Once a network provider has collocated a network node or placed a node support pole pursuant to a permit, the provider shall be permitted to continue to maintain such collocation or such pole unless required to remove or relocate under the terms of this Chapter.

(D)              Interference with network nodes.  City will not grant a permit to any Person to install any network node or other wireless facility if the City knows or has reason to know that such Person’s use of such network node of other wireless facility may in any way adversely affect or interfere with the use and operation of an existing and operational network node for which the City has previously issued a permit.

Section 14.10.111 Removal, Relocation or Modification of Network Nodes in the ROW

(A)              Notice.  Within 90 days following written notice from the City, a network provider shall, at its own expense, protect, support, temporarily or permanently disconnect, remove, relocate, change or alter the position of any network node or node support pole within the public right-of-way whenever the City has determined that such removal, relocation, change or alteration, is reasonably necessary for the construction, repair, maintenance, or installation of any City improvement in or upon, or the operations of the City in or upon, the public right-of-way.

(B)              Emergency Removal or Relocation of Facilities.  The City retains the right and privilege to disconnect or move any network node located within the public right-of-way of the City, as the City may determine to be necessary, appropriate or useful in response to any public health or safety emergency.  If circumstances permit, the City shall notify the network provider and allow the network provider an opportunity to move its own facilities prior to the City disconnecting or removing a facility and shall notify the network provider after disconnecting or removing a network node or node support pole. 

(C)              Abandonment of Facilities.  Upon abandonment of a network node or node support pole within the public right-of-way, the network provider shall notify the City within 90 days. Following receipt of such notice, the City may direct the network provider to remove all or any portion of a network node or node support pole if the City, or any of its departments, determines, subject to City Code, that such removal is necessary to protect public health, safety and welfare.

 

Section 14.10.112 Public Right-of-Way Rate

(A)              Annual Rate.  Once a network provider has installed and made operational a network node in the public right-of-way, network provider shall pay to the City compensation for use of the public right-of-way as prescribed in Leon Valley City Code Appendix A Fee Schedule. 

(B)              Cease Payment.  A network provider is authorized to remove its facilities at any time from the public right-of-way and cease paying the City compensation for use of the public right-of-way following removal and notification to the City of such removal.

Section 14.10.113 Attachment to Service Poles in the Public Right-of-Way

A network provider shall be permitted to attach network nodes to city-owned service poles, consistent with applicable law and City Code and subject to the requirements specified herein.

(A)              (Permits.  A network provider shall obtain a permit, pursuant to the terms of this Chapter, prior to collocating network nodes on service poles. 

(B)              Make Ready.  Network Provider shall be responsible for costs for make ready work on City service poles to which provider seeks to place a network node.

(C)              Technical Limitations. In the event the City determines, based upon technical grounds, that inadequate space exists on a service pole to accommodate the proposed network node, such pole may be replaced by network provider, at the network provider’s expense, with a service pole with adequate space to accommodate the proposed network node. 

(D)              Facilities Rearrangements. If another provider would have to rearrange or adjust any of its facilities to accommodate a new network node, the City shall use reasonable efforts to work with the affected providers to coordinate such activity.  All make ready work shall comply with NESC, and other applicable codes. The Applicant shall not be responsible for any third-party costs, including those of other network providers, to adjust existing attachments that are non-compliant with the NESC and other applicable codes at the time of the application. 

(C)              Service Pole Attachment Fee.  The rate to collocate a network node on a service pole in the public right-of-way shall be as prescribed in Leon Valley City Code Appendix A Fee Schedule.  Subject to the provisions of Section 14.10.114, such compensation together with the application fee and the public right-of-way rate specified in the Leon Valley City Code Appendix A Fee Schedule shall be the sole compensation that the network provider shall be required to pay to the City.

(D)              Cease Payment.  A network provider is authorized to remove its facilities at any time from a service pole in the public right-of-way and cease paying the attachment fee to the City upon notification to the City that the facilities have been removed. 

 

Section 14.10.114 Transport Facilities

Installation of transport facilities, including applicable compensation to the City for such facilities, shall be governed by Chapter 284.055 of the Texas Local Government Code.

Section 14.10.115 Design Manual

A network provider shall comply with the City’s design manual, if any, in place on the date a permit application is filed in relation to work for which the City has approved a permit application. The City’s design manual may not conflict with applicable law and must be competitively neutral.”

SECTION II.

That Appendix A Fee schedule is hereby amended to add the following:

“ARTICLE A2.000 ADMINISTRATIVE FEES

Sec. A2.010     Use of public rights-of-way by telecommunications facilities

(c) Small cell nodes - The City will collect $500 for the first five small cell network nodes, and then $250.00 for each node thereafter; a fee of $1000 for each node support pole, and an annual fee of $250 per network node installed. The rate to collocate a network node on a service pole in the public right-of-way shall be $20 per pole per year.”

SECTION III.

The 2017 Leon Valley Wireless Services (Small Cells) Design Manual is hereby adopted in its entirety, along with any subsequent additions or alterations.

SECTION IV.

This Ordinance shall take effect ten (10) days after its passage, approval and publication.

 

 

 

 

Meeting History

Oct 2, 2017 6:00 PM  City Council Regular Meeting

A motion was made by Council Member Belinda Ealy and seconded by Council Member Benny Martinez to adopt as presented.

RESULT:ADOPTED [UNANIMOUS]
MOVER:Belinda Ealy, Council Place 2
SECONDER:Benny Martinez, Mayor Pro Tem
AYES:Benny Martinez, David Edwards, Belinda Ealy, Monica Alcocer, David Jordan

Discussion







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