Last week, Senior Program Manager Cat Blake participated in the National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference in Las Vegas, Nev. The conference is the largest gathering of county officials in the country, representing counties of all sizes. Attendees are given the opportunity to share knowledge and best practices, and help shape NACo’s federal policy agenda. 

While there, Cat gave a presentation to the GIS Subcommittee meeting about the challenges and opportunities of 5G deployments for county governments. She discussed how state and federal preemption of local decision making about small cell deployments in the public right of way has significantly hindered municipalities’ ability to negotiate agreements in the public interest. She also outlined specific actions that local governments can take to proactively prepare for the large volume of small cell applications that 5G networks will require, including implementing a local ordinance to govern deployments, working collaboratively with wireless carriers to develop design standards, and clarifying and streamlining internal city permitting processes. Find Cat’s full remarks here

Other participants in the GIS Subcommittee meeting discussed the opportunities of new GIS technology for municipal services. How local governments can collaborate with the United States Census Bureau to help ensure all residents are counted during the 2020 Census was also on the agenda. 

Next Century Cities attends national and regional events throughout the year. Reach out to us to learn more about our upcoming presentations and to connect with us at conferences!