Worried about health risks (as well as government overreach) officials in the city of Portland, Oregon decided to sue the Federal Communications Commission at the beginning of March, over what it considered to be “a big land grab by the feds that will hamper how the city regulates its own infrastructure and could cost them millions of dollars.”1 This opposition to the installation of 5G networks around the city is supported by Mayor Ted Wheeler as well as commissioners Amanda Fritz and Chloe Eudaly.
In order to offer 5G service to customers, wireless companies will need to install new signal transmitters, on city-owned poles, around Portland. But that’s part of the other issue.
“Last year, the FCC limited how cities could regulate installation of those transmitters on city property, and it capped how much a city could charge wireless companies to use them.
‘The federal government has made something of a land grab against local infrastructure, like telephone poles, where these wireless nodes will be connected,’ said Mayor Ted Wheeler.
He added, ‘The federal government is trying to take control, and we at City Council take a dim view of that.'”1
In total, these FCC rulings could cost Portland $9.5 million in lost franchise fees (the FCC capped the amount cities could charge companies to use its infrastructure for transmitters at $270 per year).
And then, of course, there are the potential health impacts of a major 5G rollout; “Last year, more than 200 scientists from 40 countries appealed to the European Commission, asking them to hold off on implementing 5G until they could study the health impacts.”1
Mayor Wheeler wants the federal government to think about public health and it’s people in general. And we couldn’t agree more.