Federal Government asked to consult with councils about 5G network rollout

5g small cellsTypical 5G small cell transceivers mounted on a street light pole. image: Baltimore County Council

Local Government NSW will call on the Federal Government to consult with councils and communities about the rollout of next generation 5G networks, thanks to a successful motion from Central Coast Council at the Local Government Association’s recent annual conference, held at Warwick Farm.

Councils will specifically require consultation around the placement of enabling infrastructure. But the second part of Council’s motion, which called for regularly updated advice from experts on the possible health impacts of the network didn’t make it through after the City of Wollongong proposed an amendment cutting out any mention of community health concerns.

The amended motion was seconded by Lismore Council. Both Deputy Mayor, Jane Smith, and Councillor, Kyle MacGregor, spoke and accepted the amendment, saying the main issue was around the lack of control over the planning issues.

In a note to the conference, council said that the technology’s promise of lightning fast speeds meant that the 5G networks needed five times the amount of equipment required for 3G and 4G mobile networks, delivered through a network of small cells placed closer to homes and businesses.

“This means that they are being placed on top of power poles and other council-owned infrastructure, ” the note said. “Councils and communities are not being consulted on the placement of these cells and should be, as part of the planning process. ”

Source: LGNSW conference, Oct 15 Item 56