The Electronic Communications Code provides for two forms of remuneration: Consideration and Compensation.
Consideration is dealt with in paragraph 24 of the Code.
Where a tribunal is required to determine the consideration payable by an operator, their calculation must be based on:
- an amount or amounts representing the market value of the agreement
- confer or be bound by the code right
- market value for these purposes being assessed by reference to specific assumptions.
Compensation is dealt with in paragraph 25 of the Code. It is intended to allow landowners to recover loss or damage that has been sustained or will be sustained as a result of an agreement to host infrastructure on land or buildings.
Factors that could be considered as compensation might include:
- surveyors fees
- legal expenses
- access, for example, the creation of a management information system to handle enquiries for access
- disturbance, during the build and subsequently (maintenance visits)
- injurious affection, reduction in land value as a consequence of granting the rights
- joint site surveys involving the highways department
Note wayleaves, planning, legal and electric costs are additional.
Departments, advisers, and operators should note that installation of infrastructure will create a separate assessment for business rates payable on the property/asset.
Additional business rates consequently payable will be the responsibility of the operator.
Birmingham City Council rates
In order to maintain openness and transparency, Birmingham has adopted a non-exclusive, open access approach for telecommunication operators seeking to deploy in Birmingham.
Birmingham has set the following standard financial terms for the deployment of 4G and 5G small cells technology on its assets within the city:
- the code operator will cover all liabilities, expenses, costs (including but not limited to any solicitors' or other professionals' costs and expenses), claims, damages and losses related to installation, maintenance, upgrade and removal of small cells equipment
- payment per year per asset, site or lamppost deployment per operator, as laid out in the licence agreement
- project coordination and setup fee will be payable (prior to contract) to the council per application which will cover the initial discussion, overall agreement and legal agreement. This will be payable when both the council and the supplier have agreed to proceed prior to detail discussions being held
- the length of the agreement is nominally 10 years. This provides long term stability for the supplier and is an average of UK council best practice.
When an asset is not suitable to host telecoms infrastructure, the code operator will be given the option to upgrade the asset at its own cost, however, this option must be approved by the highways and planning team.
If no installation work is carried out within 12 months of the licence being allocated to a code operator, then the node licence will lapse.