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SANTA FE—Yesterday, the Senate approved Rep. Jim Smith’s (R-Sandia Park) effort to prepare New Mexico for the next generation of wireless technology. House Bill 38, the Wireless Consumer Advanced Infrastructure Investment Act, passed by a vote of 34 to 3.

HB 38 allows wireless providers to install small cell wireless facilities on public rights-of-way, such as utility poles. Giving providers this access readies New Mexico for “5G” wireless technology, which will increase capacity and improve data-transfer speeds for cell phone users.

“Cell phones have become an essential tool for daily life,” said Rep. Smith. “Installing this technology will help give residents access to the best wireless service available. I appreciate the work that has been done on this legislation by many different stakeholders. I look forward to seeing this bill signed into law soon.”

HB 38 now awaits action by Governor Susana Martinez.