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Hershman: Bill to Prepare Indiana for Future Investment Passes Committee

STATEHOUSE (Feb. 16, 2017) – A bill authored by State Sen. Brandt Hershman (R-Buck Creek) that would prepare the state for future telecommunications investment passed the Senate Committee on Utilities with a bipartisan vote of 8-2 today.

Senate Bill 213 would prevent local ordinances from imposing excessive fees and limitations on small-cell technology, encouraging investment by telecommunications companies in communities across Indiana.

“Technology is advancing at an incredible rate, and the telecommunications industry is no exception,” Hershman said. “Mobile data usage has skyrocketed since 2010, increasing by 2,387 percent. Industry experts say the future of meeting the increased demand lies within small-cell technology, and this bill paves the way for the installation of this infrastructure across the state.”

Small-cell technology is currently being deployed as a way to bring customers faster download speeds, improved call quality and a better overall wireless experience.

“5G technology, which will increase speeds by 100 times, will be the next breakthrough for telecommunications,” Hershman said. “With this kind of technology, communities could remotely monitor infrastructure and transportation, increase emergency response time and save money with smart grids. In order for this technology to benefit consumers and citizens, our cities and towns need to be ready for the new infrastructure.”

Hershman added that according to Ball State University, his previous legislative efforts that deregulated the telecommunications industry in Indiana have resulted in billions of dollars of investment in the state.

SB 213 will now move to the full Senate for further consideration.

Molly Swigart, Press Secretary