On 2/2/2012 9:15 PM, Drax Felton wrote:
> I thought this might interest you all as tower owners.
> If anyone knows of other materials in my defense please forward them.
I think you are going to have a tough one on this.
I also think it's time to ask for legal help, but I doubt you are going
to convince anyone except other hams that towers as customary.
As to the falling over, they really don't have a leg to stand on, BUT
when it comes to civil suits it really comes down to who can convince
others of what.
Set back rules are common and it makes do difference in how sturdy the
structure. That is a simple measure of the tower height to all of the
lot lines. If it doesn't reach the lot like it meets the set back rules
although some call for an additional distance.
It's bad enough with zoning, but deed restrictions are tough to beat as
they are part of a contract you agree to when you sign on the dotted
line. True poorly written ones are open to interpretation, but usually
the intent is clear.
Our township recently decided to rewrite the zoning because some one put
in a large array of solar panels which were to be of low reflectivity.
They weren't. Neighbors complained even though the reflections were
only a PITA for a few minutes a day. But due to poor planning, or some
one sending the wrong panels we ended up with new zoning. A long
telephone conversation with the head of the board using references as to
where they could find federal regulations already in place for several
of the items they had intended on including showed them to be
redundant. Also the idea was to make all tower installations
"monopole". It was pointed out that this would make erecting towers too
expensive for most hams. Our entire county uses ham radio for emergency
The end result was they exempted ham radio from their regulations. One
phone call made a difference so we should all remember to give input
when ever possible.
Of course when a group of neighbors gets fired up and starts a petition
drive it takes a lot more than one call or letter.
In many neighborhoods that even regulate the location of your satellite
dishes and TV antennas, the color and style of your front door, and you
have to read the house number to make sure you go in the right door,
they are as rigid as a concrete block. To me those neighborhoods are
beyond ugly, but to those homeowners associations conformance is bliss.
The thing is...Read, carefully read deed restrictions and if there is a
HOA read their regulations as well. It might be your dream home, but
if you can't use it the way you want, that's time to walk away before
signing on the dotted line and spending any money. Of course you have
to set your priorities, but for me those would have been a "no sale".
> This a letter I sent to the ARRL:
> Dear ARRL,
> I would like to request the ARRL write a clarification letter on its
> letterhead to help me with an issue.
> My neighbors have served me with a civil summons regarding my antenna tower.
> We have a deed restriction that says that "no transmitting or receiving
> tower or antenna (other than those normally used for customary household
> radios and appliances) shall be permitted, and any satellite dish receivers
> must be located on the rear one-third of the lot."
> Since the crux of my defense is around what is "customary" to use at home I
> was hoping to get the ARRL, the national association for amateur radio, to
> document for evidence that it knows that ham radio has been a "customary
> household appliance" for around a 100 years.
> Their complaint also says that since I have an FCC license that makes my
> radios outside the normal custom of households too. Clearly misinformed.
> They also complain that if my tower falls it will land on other properties,
> which is impossible on my 2.5 acre lot, given the distances to the property
> lines. The tower we're talking about is a double guyed, 60 foot stack of
> Rohn 25 with a HF Yagi on it. Not a superstructure. Even if it could fall
> its entire length it wouldn't even hit my own house.
> I thank you for your help,
> ARRL Member, KB3X, Drax Felton
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