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US Tower MA40 Plan Part II

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Subject: US Tower MA40 Plan Part II
From: (Fred Hopengarten)
Date: Thu, 17 Oct 1996 01:52:45 EDT

No attorney (and I am one) will ever advise you to act illegally.  But I
think you need some more sophisticated lawyering.  I don't know CA law,
but this is just another structure.  In the U.S., if it isn't outlawed,
it is legal.  You may have to remind the town of that  --- a lot.

Never rely on the word of the poeple behind the counter to tell you what
the law is.  Their safest answer is always "Don't do it."  Read the bylaw
yourself, THEN provide it to a local ARRL Volunteer Counsel to read.  The
initial consultation will be free.

Good luck.
Fred Hopengarten, K1VR
Six Willarch Road * Lincoln, MA 01773-5105 * 617/259-0088
Big antennas, high in the sky, are better than small ones, low.

On Wed, 16 Oct 96 16:53:12 UT "Joe Spinosa" <> writes:
>First of all, thanks to all that responded to my original posting a 
>few weeks 
>Much sound advice and good information.
>I've managed to convince my XYL that a 3'x3'x4' hole won't be so bad 
>if I 
>build a small patio around the base and none of the concrete pad shows 
>grade level.  I plan to dig the hole about a foot deeper than spec., 
>and fill 
>it to about 6" below grade level.  Then I'll build a nice flagstone 
>around the base fixture.
>I'll go ahead and buy the MARB rotator base for the tubular tower as 
>well as 
>the mast raising fixture to make this thing a one-man installation.
>OK, so now I'm dealing with the city planning commission.  What a 
>joke!  They 
>have no procedure to accommodate my needs.  I find this strange.  
>Concord, CA 
>where I live has a population of well over 100,000 and was 
>incorporated into a 
>city back around the turn of the century.  This has never come up 
>My contact at the city planning commission has been doing some 
>research for my 
>project and reports that they have issued "land use" permits to 
>users for antenna towers, but never for a private individual in a 
>I think I know why:  The closest permit she could find that would 
>my needs was a level "C".  This starts at $2,640.  Its the same fee, 
>requires the same documentation and reports, as if I wanted to build 
>an entire 
>It's frustrating because I wanted to do this the right way.  Part of 
>process requires notifying all the neighbors within 300' of the 
>installation.  I'm thinking of taking matters into my own hands and 
>with my neighbors directly.
>My current thinking is:  If I can educate and get the blessing of all 
>neighbors, then there should be no need for city involvement.  On that 
>note, I 
>sent a letter out to all my neighbors (14) yesterday that described 
>what I 
>want to do.  I enclosed photocopies of the US Tower marketing material 
>for the 
>tubular tower (Neighbor Friendly Design!) as well as a photocopy of a 
>traditional triangular Rohn type tower for comparison.
>I told the city planning commission that this whole thing is crazy.  I 
>pointed out that there are dozens of amateur towers in the city.  It's 
>a shame 
>that we have no process to do this legally.  I did say that one day a 
>ham with 
>$10,000+ will challenge this whole thing and get it changed, but it 
>won't be 
>Any lawyers interested in a pro-bono case against city hall?  Didn't 
>think so.
>I really feel that I've been forced to do it this way.  One problem I 
>see is 
>that besides being illegal per-say, no official will be involved in 
>my engineering specs.  I guess most hams do things right for their own 
>investment, and I certainly will be included in that sentiment.
>The neighborhood I live in is new.  We all bought our homes new in 
>1993 and we 
>all know each other.  I was even printing a neighborhood newsletter 
>for the 
>first year or so.  I'm the guy on the block who worked with the police 
>establish a "Neighborhood Watch" program.  A detective put on a 
>that I hosted at my house for all the neighbors.  Countless parties 
>have been 
>held, and now, a few years later, I'm not aware of any hostilities on 
>I wonder if my plans could change all that?:-)
>"Gee, we had a nice thing going here until JOE decided to put up those 
>dreadful antennas in his back yard!"
>Approaching the problem directly has some advantages.  
>Philosophically, it 
>harks back to the good old days when neighbors worked things out 
>without the 
>benefit of lawyers and city planning commissions.  Unfortunately, 
>times have 
>changed, and if I do this without city approval, it will always be 
>subject to 
>come down.  In short, it will be illegal.
>What say Tower Talkers?  Should I even bother contacting the County 
>to see if they have a process?  More important for my own peace of 
>mind:  Will 
>I have to learn to live with the self imposed stigma of being a social 
>Best Regards,
>Joe Spinosa
>Concord, CA
>FAQ on WWW:     
>Administrative requests:
>Sponsored by Akorn Access, Inc & KM9P

FAQ on WWW:     
Administrative requests:
Sponsored by Akorn Access, Inc & KM9P

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