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FCC Denies Michigan Ham's Request for Ruling

04/06/2009

In October 2007, Christopher Kaczmarek, KB8MLC, of Saginaw, Michigan, petitioned the FCC for a ruling regarding the installation of his Amateur Radio antenna. Kaczmarek told the FCC that he received a notice from the manager of his mobile home community stating the antennas were not allowed and asked for "a ruling from the Commission recognizing [his] right to an Amateur Radio antenna structure." On April 6, 2009, the FCC denied Kaczmarek's request for a ruling in his favor, based on the fact that PRB-1 protections do not extend to private homeowner's agreements.

The Commission agreed with Kaczmarek that Section 97.15 of the Commission's Rules provides that "state and local regulation of antenna structures must not preclude amateur service communications, must reasonably accommodate such communications, and must constitute the minimum practicable regulation to achieve the state or local authority's legitimate purpose." In its letter to Kaczmarek, the FCC pointed out that it has not, however, extended this policy to regulations promulgated by private parties.

Saying that it has considered this same question twice before, the FCC told Kaczmarek that it "chose not to preempt private land use regulations that restrict the installation of antennas and associated support structures used by Amateur Radio stations. As agreements between private parties are voluntarily established and freely entered into, the Commission is hesitant to interfere with them unless it is shown that private agreements will seriously disrupt the federal regulatory scheme."



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