FCC Says “What Restrictive Covenant Problem?”

From the ARRL web site:

On August 20 — in response to a Spring 2012 Congressional directive — the Federal Communications Commission released its findings on the Uses and Capabilities of Amateur Radio Service Communications in Emergencies and Disaster Relief: Report to Congress Pursuant to Section 6414 of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012.

There was hope that the thousands of comments from amateur radio operators concerning the restrictions that homeowners associations place on the use of antennas would get the FCC’s attention. Maybe the FCC would see that the overall effectiveness of the amateur radio service for emergency use is being limited by these arbitrary, overly restrictive rules? (See a summary of my comments here.)

But, the FCC responded with this simple statement:

Moreover, while commenters suggest that private land use restrictions have become more common, our review of the record does not indicate that amateur operators are unable to find homes that are not subject to such restrictions. Therefore, at this time, we do not see a compelling reason for the Commission to revisit its previous determinations that preemption should not be expanded to CC&Rs.

I am not surprised by this response but still disappointed.

73, Bob K0NR

Bob Witte, KØNR, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Colorado, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

8 Responses to “FCC Says “What Restrictive Covenant Problem?””

  • Nick KC2VWR:

    What is worse is that some town/cities in the US have very difficult and restrictive Planning regulations in Place – Cohoes NY being one

  • Matt / KØMOS:

    Disappointing indeed…

  • Del aj4em:

    then change the city government, don’t make another new federal agency to tell people what they can do with their property.

  • Mark AI4HO:

    Agreed, sometimes we need to take the path of most resistance. I agree with Del AJ4EM. Change city government, go to city council or county commission meetings, get vocal on this subject, not violent, but vocal. State clearly your case, know your subject material, present it calmly, answer any questions asked of you. If need be, get really involved, run for city council, or county commission. Be heard, let people know what is happening, tell your neighbors, if you happen to live in a trailer park..let EVERYONE there know..hey look, if we have a tornado,earthquake, hurricane,etc. because of restrictions I can’t operate my ham radio, to keep y’all up to date as to whats happening(I actually know a guy who did just that in his 55+ trailer park).
    We don’t need another govt. agency telling us..no you can’t do this because, the radiation from your 50 watt antenna @ 30′ will interfere with the old lady in lot 323 television, and she wont be able to watch the shopping network..BS is all I have to say on the matter.

    Here in sleepy Vero Beach, Fl. we have the same issues, but at least here it is only a few that I am aware of that are real problems. Some of the new housing developments that have gone up in recent history are a prime example. I only know of 2 maybe 3 hams that are affected by this, most of us are lucky enough to not live in a subdivision, or if they do..they’re stealthy enough to get caught. I am very fortunate, as when we bought our home, I was not an active ham, I was on my self imposed hiatus from the hobby until I could think straight. Once I came out of that nightmare..I went kinda wild, and in the space of 4-5 years went from a GAP vertical, to a 52′ crank up tower and a beam on top. I have assisted other in their endeavor to be heard by city or county politicians. However..the wheels of justice turn slow..even here in sleepy Vero Beach, Fl. I wish you luck in your endeavors.

  • k3wtb:

    I agree with you all. We need all the help we can get in an EMERGENCY.

  • Larry KG4ZAR:

    It sure seems all I read and hear is how restrictions affect hams during “EMERGENCIES”. How about how it affects private property rights of us that are not interested in “EMERGENCY” communications? How about how the restrictions affect people that want to watch “over the air” TV instead of paying inflated cable rates? Come folks! Let’s get real and fight for property rights in general and leave out all the “lights and siren” gibberish!

  • Dave, N6XJP:

    And this surprises you? Ha! The FCC has been out of touch for years. There are approximately 314,000 Home Owner Associations in the U.S., controlling approximately 24 million properties and nearly 64 million people. And this isn’t a “problem” for amateurs?

  • Michael - N5TGL:

    Tying this bill to “emergency communications” was its failing. There aren’t enough emergencies of the magnitude needed often enough to justify changing the law, plain and simple. Now if they would have shown that their ability to enjoy their hobby was being infringed on 24/7, then they might have had a chance. However, they chose the “OMG HAM RADIO WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS” line. The gov’t called them on it.

    I was very lucky, we moved shortly after I got heavily back into ham radio. Not everyone has that luck. Personally I think the people that say “if you don’t like it, move” should just have their face slapped off for the combination of ignorance and arrogance. It’s not that easy, or they would have moved.

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