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SB 556

SB 556 is a very greedy and massive overreach by and for the telecommunications companies to eliminate local government (city and county, etc.) regulatory power over cell antennas.

July 7, 2021

In the Assembly Committee on Communications and Conveyance today the Verizon lawyer gave half truths and lies about SB 556 in response to Assemblymembers’ questions.

SB 556 (Dodd) “Street light poles, traffic signal poles, utility poles, and support structures: attachments.” would specifically authorize the telecoms to place cell antennas on “street light poles, traffic signal poles, utility poles,  and support structures” and would “supersede[] all conflicting local laws . . . .”

Feel free to email me for a transcript of my comments to the Committee.

Although the Chairman, Sen. Mike McGuire, voted against it the bill passed by a vote of 4-1. The Senators seemed oblivious to all the objections and arguments by those opposed to the bill, including mine. They didn’t even acknowledge our objections let alone address them. Committee staff said in the bill analysis that the author’s claims about the bill are not true. The Committee did not even call him on that.

The Elk Grove City Council passed Ordinance 19-2019 on August 28, 2019, which prohibits a cell antenna “immediately adjacent to or across the street from the front yard of any residential dwelling.”  That is Elk Grove’s “front yard rule” and we fought hard to get it and so did the City.  SB 556 would wipe away our hard fought and negotiated “front yard rule”. 

The telecoms and their friends in the Legislature are trying to rush this bill through the Committees as fast as possible so that residents don’t have time to organize and inform each other and oppose the bill.

The League of California Cities opposes SB 556

The City of Elk Grove opposes SB 556, which is good. Here is the City’s letter of opposition, dated April 7, 2021.

But the City of Elk Grove has not opposed AB 537 or the other 2 current telecom bills, SB 378 and SB 28, despite my repeated requests. Many Elk Grove residents need to ask the City to oppose these bills.

My April 19, 2021 newsletter is all about what you can do to stop these bills. If you didn’t receive that newsletter please contact me. You can also subscribe to my newsletter. Just email me.