Municipal Management of Cellphone Towers, DAS and Small Cell Deployments

Regulating Placement, Protecting Rights of Way, and Leasing Sites and Structures

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Thursday, October 19, 2017

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926
Program Materials

This CLE webinar will prepare counsel to identify and address complex issues relating to both small cell and traditional cell tower applications and leases, zoning regulations, and revenue considerations. The panel will focus on both regulatory compliance as well as negotiating and structuring site leases and franchises.


Research predicts a massive growth in demand for wireless broadband services, which will be reflected in an explosion in the number of wireless deployments of cellphone towers, masts or antennas, 4G & 5G networks, distributed antenna systems (DAS) and small cell deployments. In addition, existing cell towers and small cell sites are constantly being reconfigured to support new equipment needed to meet increased demand.

Municipalities are increasingly involved in two legally distinct but sometimes overlapping roles: 1) obtaining regulatory approval, and 2) negotiating leases or licenses for placement of wireless devices on government property, including rooftops, buildings, street lights and traffic signals.

For counsel representing local governments, challenges that arise in wireless site leases include lease rates, revenue distribution, and environmental and zoning issues. Regulatory burdens are also changing with the enactment of FCC shot clocks and collocation fast tracks pursuant to the FCC’s 6409(a) rules.

Moreover, development of DAS systems involving access to rights-of-way creates complicated issues surrounding the intersection of zoning, right-of-way regulation and proprietary issues. DAS providers and local governments around the country are seeking solutions to these challenges.

Listen as our panel of local government legal advisers discusses best practices for counsel to local governments to prepare for and deal with issues specific to cell towers and site applications and leases.



  1. The Growth in Wireless deployments
  2. Cell tower zoning regulations, including applications and leading cases
  3. Understand Cell tower leases/licenses


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • Strategies should local government counsel consider in structuring cell tower site leases
  • Unique challenges concerning cell tower site applications and leases are presented by DAS and other new technology
  • Factors to be considered in determining whether to renew existing leases for placement of towers on municipal property
  • Updates on federal laws, regulations and state legislation governing small cell and tower deployments


Lederer, Gerard
Gerard L. Lederer

Best Best & Krieger

Mr. Lederer serves as legislative counsel to TeleCommUnity and is a well-known advocate for public and private property...  |  Read More

Van Eaton, Joseph
Joseph Van Eaton

Best Best & Krieger

Mr. Van Eaton specializes in representing municipalities on a broad range of communications issues in federal and state...  |  Read More

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