Legislation Assigned to the House Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Committee (15)

Date of Last Recorded Action: 3/16/2020

HB 0208 NeutralLocals Can Contract for Utilities for up to 20 Years Tom McCall
2/26/2019 Senate Read and Referred Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Regulated Industries and Utilities -
2019/02/15 Report 2019/03/01 Report General County Government Todd Edwards
This legislation authorizes cities, counties and local government to enter into contracts for utility services (electric, natural gas or water services) for terms up to 20 years.  Current law allows local governments/authorities to contract for said services for up to 10 years.   
HB 0243 OpposeTelecom - Another Attempt to Reduce Local Right of Way Fees - Another State Double Standard Lee Hawkins
2/13/2019 House Second Readers Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications --
2019/02/15 Report Franchise Fees General County Government Todd Edwards

This bill significantly reduces the amount of franchise and other fees that cities may charge for telephone/fiber/video wires running through their jurisdictions.  Ironically, the same limits do not apply to the State Department of Transportation’s rights of way, creating yet another state/local double standard in the administration of fees.  

HB 0437 NeutralBroadband - Reverse Federal Net-Neutrality Ruling Viola Davis
2/26/2019 House Second Readers Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications --
General County Government Todd Edwards
This legislation would overturn, for Georgia, the recent Federal Communications Commission ruling which overturned the "net-neutrality" policy for broadband providers nationwide.     
HB 0465 NegotiatingWater Customer Bill of Rights Don Parsons
3/4/2020 House Committee Favorably Reported By Substitute Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications --
2019/03/01 Report 2020/03/06 Report Kathleen Bowen Nat. Res. & the Environment
This bill, entitled the “Georgia Water Customer Bill of Rights Act”, would create new requirements for public and private water systems. The bill includes specifics on customer service standards, how and when billing should occur and notification requirements regarding termination of service.
HB 0499 NeutralBroadband - Authorize Use of Electric Easements Trey Kelley
1/13/2020 Senate Recommitted Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Regulated Industries and Utilities -
2019/03/01 Report 2019/03/08 Report 2019/03/29 Report General County Government Todd Edwards
This bill permits broadband services, so long as additional poles or other ground-based structures are not employed, to be deployed in electrical easements without changing the nature of the easement, nor interfere with or impair any vested rights of the easement owner or occupier.  Broadband providers, or owners of electric easements, may install, maintain, lease, and operate broadband services in the easement without incurring liability or paying additional compensation to the owner of the property subject to the easement.  Owners of electric easements may assess fees and impose reasonable conditions on the use of its facilities within an easement.            
HB 0541 SupportWireless Service Providers Required to Make Call Location Information Available to Law Enforcement Ricky Williams
4/2/2019 House Withdrawn, Recommitted Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications --
2019/03/01 Report Debra Nesbit Law Enforcement Public Safety and Courts
This legislation requires all wireless service providers to provide call location information of it subscribers to law enforcement when requested.  This bill also provides immunity to the wireless providers for information provided.
HB 0556 EvaluatingPublic utilities and public transportation; limitations on fees that may be charged for installation of telephone facilities; provide Lee Hawkins
3/4/2020 House Committee Favorably Reported By Substitute Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications --
General County Government Telecommunications Todd Edwards
HB 1049 SupportCybersecurity - Required Reporting, Discuss in Executive Session and Exempt from Open Records Martin Momtahan
3/4/2020 House Committee Favorably Reported By Substitute Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications --
2020/02/28 Report 2020/03/06 Report General County Government Public Safety and Courts Todd Edwards
This bill requires local governments to report (to the state director of emergency management) any cyber attack incident, data breach or identified use of malware that "creates a life-safety event; substantially impacts the security of data and information systems; or affects critical systems, equipment or service delivery".  It then authorizes any portion of a local government meeting that discusses or votes upon a cybersecurity issue to be held in executive session.  Lastly, it exempts local government records, data and information concerning cybersecurity from the Open Records Act.           
HR 1093 SupportHouse Study Committee on Cybersecurity Don Parsons
2/26/2020 House Committee Favorably Reported By Substitute Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications --
2020/02/28 Report General County Government Todd Edwards
This resolution establishes the House Study Committee on Cybersecurity to undertake a study of the conditions, needs, issues, and problems related to cybersecurity.  In particular, the study committee will explore any privacy protection requirements related to the collection, processing and sharing of any data from connecting computing devices; methods the state may use to encourage and promote the investment by companies and the public in better internet of things related security measures; and any additional security or privacy concerns that may need to be considered by the state.    
SB 0002 SupportAuthorize EMCs to Provide Broadband Service and Utilize Electric Easements Steve Gooch
4/26/2019 Effective Date Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Regulated Industries and Utilities -
2019/01/18 Report 2019/02/08 Report 2019/02/22 Report 2019/03/08 Report 2019/03/22 Report
2019/03/29 Report Todd Edwards

This legislation authorizes Georgia's Electric Membership Corporations (EMCs) to provide broadband services, either directly or indirectly through a contractual arrangement or through an affiliate, within their respective jurisdictions in Georgia.  EMC's would not be able to "cross-subsidize" their broadband services through their electric or gas funds, nor would they be able to charge the costs of their broadband services to their electric or gas customers.  Those EMCs providing broadband would have a duty to provide access to their poles and rights of way to all communications service providers on rates, terms and conditions that are reasonable and nondiscriminatory.  Other communications service providers or EMC members can petition to enforce the above conditions with the Georgia Public Service Commission.  EMCs will also be eligible to apply for federal or state loans and grants to provide this service. EMCs already providing broadband services have until January 1, 2021 to comply with the provisions of this law.   

The language form HB 499 was attached to this bill, permitting broadband services (so long as additional poles or other ground-based structures are not employed) to be deployed in electrical easements provided this does not change the nature of the easement nor interfere with or impair any vested rights of the easement owner or occupier.  Broadband providers, or owners of electric easements, may install, maintain, lease, and operate broadband services in the easement without incurring liability or paying additional compensation to the owner of the property subject to the easement.  Owners of electric easements may assess fees and impose reasonable conditions on the use of facilities within the easement. 

SB 0017 SupportAuthorization for Telephone Coops to Provide Broadband Service Steve Gooch
4/26/2019 Effective Date Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Regulated Industries and Utilities -
2019/01/18 Report 2019/02/15 Report 2019/02/22 Report 2019/03/15 Report 2019/03/22 Report
2019/03/29 Report Broadband Econ. Dev. & Transportation Economic Development Land Use/Zoning
Policy Council Todd Edwards
Mirroring HB 22, this legislation authorizes Georgia's Telephone Cooperatives to provide broadband services, either directly or indirectly through a contractual arrangement or through an affiliate.  Coops will also be eligible to apply for federal or state loans and grants to provide this service. 
SB 0066 SupportSmall Cell (5G) Legislation - ACCG Compromise Language Steve Gooch
10/1/2019 Effective Date Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Regulated Industries and Utilities -
2019/02/08 Report 2019/02/15 Report 2019/03/01 Report 2019/03/15 Report 2019/03/29 Report
Broadband General County Government Todd Edwards

Mirroring HB 184, this is the compromise Small Cell (5G) legislation.  By way of background, over the past two years, ACCG has opposed legislation which would have greatly preempted local government management of the public's rights of way for the placement of small cell (5G) poles, antennas and equipment.  At the urging of the General Assembly, ACCG, GMA, Verizon and AT&T negotiated this reasonable compromise over the 2018 interim that has incorporated many safeguards which ACCG had called for in previous legislation.  

Key points of this ACCG compromise include: incentives for collocation in order to limit new poles; protections for historic districts and residential areas; the requirement that telecoms share build-out plans prior to deploying new facilities; a safe-harbor in case the current FCC order preempting state and local regulation of 5G deployment is overturned; the prohibition of speculative permit requests by third parties; and safeguards for local aesthetic and decorative pole conditions, among many others.  For a summary of the bill's key provisions, please click here.  

For a detailed, section-by-section summary of the bill, please click here.

SB 0095 NeutralLocals Can Contract for Utilities for up to 20 Years Randy Robertson
7/1/2019 Effective Date Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Regulated Industries and Utilities -
2019/02/15 Report 2019/03/22 Report General County Government Todd Edwards
Mirroring HB 208, this legislation authorizes local governments to enter into contracts for utility services (electric, natural gas or water services) for terms up to 20 years.  Current law allows local governments/authorities to contract for said services for up to 10 years.   
SB 0162 NeutralShort Term Rentals - Counties and Cities Cannot Prohibit Entirely Matt Brass
6/25/2020 House - House Withdrawn, Recommitted Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Regulated Industries and Utilities -
2019/03/08 Report 2019/03/29 Report General County Government Intern 1 Todd Edwards
This legislation allows counties and cities to regulate the occupancy or rental of residences (short term rentals, defined as properties rented for less than 30 consecutive days) within their jurisdictions; however, local governments cannot "prohibit all such occupancies or rentals" within the county or city.        
SB 0373 SupportDirectors/Officers of Nonprofit Corporations - Raise the Standard for Liability John Kennedy
7/1/2020 Effective Date Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Judiciary -
Larry Ramsey
This bill is intended to provide additional protection to members of boards of directors and officers of nonprofit entities and electric membership corporations (EMCs). It would raise the standard of holding such directors liable for their actions from an ordinary-negligence standard to a gross-negligence standard. In addition, it would loosen restrictions on members of EMC boards from doing business with the EMC.
Green background on status indicates a bill has been acted on the last recorded legislative day.








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