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Calif. Case Shows Propriety Of Telecom CEQA Exemptions

Law360 (April 10, 2018, 4:11 PM EDT) -- On Feb. 5, 2018, the Sixth Appellate District of the California Court of Appeal issued a crucial ruling concerning California Environmental Quality Act review for wireless telecommunications facilities in the public rights-of-way. The case, Aptos Residents Association v. County of Santa Cruz,[1] clarifies that so called “small cell” telecommunications networks in the public streets and highways are exempt from CEQA review under the “Class 3” categorical exemption, which, among other things, applies to “limited numbers of new, small facilities or structures,” such as “[w]ater main, sewage, electrical, gas, and other utility extensions…”[2]

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The project involved installation of small antennas...

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