Statewide 5G bill passes Senate

[Photo via Envato Elements]

On Thursday the Alabama Senate approved a bill that set a statewide standard for setting up 5G cellular infrastructure. Sponsored by Decatur-Republican Sen. Arthur Orr, Senate Bill 172 passed with 30-0 vote.

Over 25 states including Georgia, North Carolina, Florida, Tennessee, and Arkansas have already passed similar 5G legislation, and other states are looking to make the same jump into 5G this year. 

“I thought it was imperative for the continued growth of our economy to remain competitive with our neighboring states and not wait any longer to enact 5G legislation,” Orr said. “The economic impact that comes along with this technology is vital as we to increase our commitment and invest in the infrastructure of our state. This bill will pave the way for Alabama to standardize the permitting process for small cell wireless equipment and services.”

It is estimated that small cell technology could lead to over $4 billion in investments and over 7,000 jobs per year in Alabama. 

Senate Bill 172 was approved after a lengthy discussion in the Senate body which included amendments to address current agreements between cities and wireless providers. 

“I would like to thank my colleagues in the Senate for their support, it is not often that we see agreement across party lines on issues, but I believe this highlights that fact that this is of the upmost importance to Alabama,” Orr added. “I would also like to give a special thanks to Senator Marsh and Senator Givhan who worked between all interested parties and added amendments to ensure that the bill that was voted on was agreed to by everyone involved so that nobody was left out of this crucial piece of legislation.”

“5G” stands for 5th generation wireless and is the next generation for high speed wireless cellular networks.  

Senate Bill 172 now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration.