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Mo. Senate Panel Seeks Extension of Small-Cells Law to 2030

The Missouri Senate Commerce Committee supported extending the sunset date for the state’s 2018 small-cells law to Dec. 31, 2029, from Jan. 1, 2025. The committee voted 9-0 for SB-1411 at a livestreamed hearing Tuesday. The 2018 law preempted local…

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governments on right of way in an effort to streamline 5G infrastructure deployment. The House has a similar bill, HB-1995. The Senate panel also heard testimony on HB-2057, which would explicitly exempt streaming content providers from paying video franchise fees. The House passed the bill Feb. 29 (see 2402290065). The Senate committee last month OK’d the Senate version, SB-947. Dish Network, DirecTV and Netflix lobbyists supported HB-2057, while the Missouri Municipal League and others representing cities opposed the measure. No regular constituents have ever testified for the bill, said Korein Tillery attorney Steve Berezney, who said he represented cities involved in litigation to collect fees from streamers. "This is something that is being pushed by the industry." Also at the Commerce Committee meeting, AT&T, Missouri Cable Telecommunications Association and other ISPs supported SB-1018, which would require the state or municipalities to reimburse internet and video service providers whenever they require them to relocate their infrastructure. Sponsor Sen. Justin Brown (R) proposed an amendment to match the bill’s language with the House’s HB-2056. At a meeting Monday, the House Fiscal Review Committee voted 7-0 to clear HB-2142, which would provide a tax deduction for broadband grant funds for 2022 and later tax years.