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ARRL General Bulletin ARLB002 (2015)

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ARLB002 Michigan Passes, Governor Signs Antenna Accommodation
Legislation

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ARRL Bulletin 2  ARLB002
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  January 16, 2015
To all radio amateurs 

SB QST ARL ARLB002
ARLB002 Michigan Passes, Governor Signs Antenna Accommodation
Legislation

Ten years of work within the ARRL Michigan Section have culminated
in an Amateur Radio antenna bill that mirrors the "reasonable
accommodation" provisions of the PRB-1 federal pre-emption policy.
Michigan Gov Rick Snyder signed the measure, Senate Bill 0493, into
law on January 15, creating Public Act 556. Senator Rick Jones
sponsored the bill. ARRL Michigan Section Manager Larry Camp, WB8R,
said Michigan is the 31st state to have a PRB-1 bill on its books.

"The current PRB-1 Team has been working for 3 years to get this
accomplished," he said. "Our bill endured four votes on its way to
becoming law - Senate and House committees and the Senate and House
floors. Each vote was unanimous."

The most pertinent language in the new Michigan law, which comes
directly from Part 97.15 of the FCC Amateur Service rules, states:

"An Amateur Radio Service station antenna structure may be erected
at heights and dimensions sufficient to accommodate Amateur Radio
Service communications. Regulation of an Amateur Radio Service
station antenna structure by a local unit of government must not
preclude Amateur Radio Service communications. Rather, it must
reasonably accommodate those communications and must constitute the
minimum practicable regulation to accomplish the local unit of
government's legitimate purpose."

The new law also provides for an advisory committee that may be
established jointly by the Michigan Section and other state
organizations, such as the Michigan Municipal League and the
Michigan Township Association. Camp said the advisory board could
become involved at the request of the amateur, the community, zoning
board, or representative associations as required. "The purpose of
having the Michigan Section and the ARRL named specifically," Camp
said, "is to ensure that the technical information that the advisory
committee receives is accurate and pertinent to the questions at
hand."

"The Michigan Section of the ARRL will be available to provide
information and training as an ongoing educational effort for
communities and their representative organizations," Camp added.

Camp said the PRB-1 Team believes the advisory committee will be an
important tool in situations when community officials know little or
nothing about Amateur Radio. "We will be able to provide accurate
information and support from the ARRL, as required," he said. "This
committee will help explain the reasons why radio amateurs need to
have antennas in the air in order to communicate in an emergency."

The new law also echoes federal requirements that owners of certain
Amateur Radio antenna structures extending more than 200 feet above
ground level at the site or that are located near or at an airport
must notify the Federal Aviation Administration and register with
the FCC.

In addition to Camp and ARRL Great Lakes Director Dale Williams,
WA8EFK - who served as an advisor - Michigan PRB-1 Team members
included State Government Liaison Ed Hude, WA8QJE; Local Government
Liaisons Butch Hedges, KD8NKJ, and Hal Thomas, N8HAL; Webmaster Jay
Nugent, WB8TKL; Legal Advisor Raoul Revord, W8RDR, and Public
Information Officer Pat Mullet, KC8RTW.
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