Home » NEWS » Energy » Power companies urged to consider cell tower idea

Power companies urged to consider cell tower idea

MBJ staff

Brandon Presley, commissioner for the Northern District of the Mississippi Public Service Commission has instructed electric utilities in the state to investigate and develop policies to allow new cell phone towers to be placed on electric transmission towers.

Presley said in  news release on Tuesday that such an arrangement could greatly improve cellular coverage in Mississippi while at the same time providing an additional source of revenue to benefit electric ratepayers.

“Co-locating electric and telecommunications facilities could kill two birds with one stone, and I am very interested to see the utilities’ proposals on how to implement this. I have made it a priority in my time in office to ensure that quality cell phone service is available to everyone in Mississippi. By cheapening the cost to put up new cell towers and avoiding siting delays, I fully expect to see more and better cell phone coverage across the state sooner rather than later. At the same time, I will ensure that the money electric utilities receive for a leasing these facilities is used to benefit their customers,” Presley said.

Presley said that in 2008, the Georgia Power Co. was allowed to recover costs associated with leasing space for telecommunications facilities and allocate half of all revenues generated to ratepayers. Similar co-location programs have been enacted in at least a dozen states nationwide, the release said.

Mara Hartmann, spokeswoman for Entergy Mississippi, said that the utility had looked into that possibility in the past and though it has concerns for worker safety and transmission reliability “we’ll continue to work with the commission.”

Mississippi Power Co. spokesman Bill Snyder said in an email that the utility “is reviewing Commissioner Presley’s request . . . . While analysis and research are required for this proposal, we are open to ideas which could benefit our customers and the state from a growth and economic standpoint.”




… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.

If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.

Click for more info

About Jack Weatherly

One comment

Leave a Reply