Cell phone tower bill stalls at Capitol - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Cell phone tower bill stalls at Capitol

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ATLANTA -

A bill centered on cell phone towers failed to advance by Crossover Day at the Georgia state Capitol.

Demand for more cell tower capacity continues to grow and placement of the towers continues to cause battles.

The proposed legislation would have given counties and cities a 150-day deadline to act on new cell tower applications.

"There have been people that have said, you know, this bill would allow the cell companies to just go ahead and put up cell towers without even getting permitted by the cities and the counties. It doesn't do that at all," said Rep. Don Parsons (R-Marietta), the bill's sponsor.

But after winning easy committee approval, the bill stalled.  It did not get to the House floor By Crossover Day -- the deadline for most bills to pass the house or senate -- and have a chance for final approval.

Todd Edwards represents county commissioners at the Capitol.

"We want to thank the General Assembly for recognizing the continued meaningful importance of counties and Georgia communities and the cell tower siting process," Edwards.

Local governments warned that the measure would diminish their ability to regulate cell tower locations.

"Should there be any impediments unnecessarily – impediments at the county level -- I think we can work with our members and the wireless communities to address them," Edwards said.

But Parsons says local government delays have the effect of curtailing expanded service to consumers.

"It's very important and I wish that we could have gotten it done this year, but it's something that we'll be working on very hard next year," Parsons said.

Under legislative rules, the bill could still be attached to another measure as an amendment but the odds are against that being done successfully.

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