Date   

Restricted? Get involved.

Cliff
 

I'll go first!

PRB-1 somewhat protects our rights to property, but only so far as our interaction with other public governments; and that interaction varies more than the solar indices.

The most common impediment to antenna support structures in the Home/Property Owner Association industry. Those extra documents signed when purchasing that home were a private contract saying you, the purchaser, agreed to abide and comply with the Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions; the Deed Restrictions; & the By-Laws of the HOA – the “documents” as they are often called.

A developer created that initial set of documents when they subdivided the land, filed the plat, and then started construction. That developer filed all those with the county and state. The HOA became a not for profit corporation run by a boards of directors; initially under developer control, but eventually the “board” will be elected by the home owners.

The United States Constitution states in Article I, section 10, clause 1: “No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility.” The part we need to look at is; “No State shall …. pass any … Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts”. And when you purchased that house in that HOA/POA, you signed an obligation to contract.

While PRB-1 extends to state and local governmental restrictions, it does not extend to private contracts. So, what can we do about that ironclad Constitutional stipulation?

First, how ironclad is that stipulation? Has it been abridged before? Actually – yes it has in the case of HOAs. The United States Congress passed a bill which was signed into law stipulating that any HOA rule or by-law prohibiting flying the flag of the United States was unenforceable and to be null and void. Much like PRB-1, HOAs can only impose reasonable restrictions on the size, height, or placement of a flag and pole. With the evolution of television reception moving toward cable connections, the satellite industry lobbied to get their slice of the pie, and managed to get an exemption to have a receive-only antenna less than 1 meter in size, installed somehow for a homeowner. And there was a case regarding who could actually provide cable and telephone service to any homeowner within the HOA.

The precedents have been set. The real need is to get PRB-1 extended to that private government created by that HOA.

What can be done until then?

First, when looking for a new QTH, tell your Realtor, in writing, your stipulations of needing unrestricted ability to erect antenna support structures.

Do your own homework and look at city and/or county restrictions. Talk to the building inspector and codes enforcement departments. Find out what forms, permits, plans, and fees will be required. Typically, the farther you are from a metropolitan area, the fewer hoops you need to jump.

Lastly, get politically involved. Promote the Amateur Radio Service as a benefit to your community. Larger HOAs have some of their own emergency services. What better communications could you have for a CERT team than amateur radio? Get on the board of your current HOA. Get the rules and by-laws changed. Lobby your elected officials, or run for office yourself. Start a CERT group in your HOA or neighborhood.

Get involved.

Change the world.


Re: Restricted? Get involved.

John K7KB
 

I guess I get to be second :) One of the biggest problems I found when applying for a permit was that most local Building & Planning departments have no clue as to the construction, erection, or engineering in regards to Amateur Radio towers. The first thing they think of when you go in and tell them you want to get a permit for a "tower" is that you are putting up a Wireless Communications tower, aka, Cell Tower. Then it's a long process to try and prove that your tower doesn't need to meet the icing or earthquake requirements that a WCF would need, that it meets all current engineering standards, etc. And with most cast strapped counties, they will do everything in their power to drag out the permit process so they can add whatever charges they can dream up to add to the bill. Let's just say, I can totally understand why some hams just put up the tower and say to hell with the permit process. If you try to do the right thing, that's when you get screwed. At least that is my experience, YMMV :)

John K7KB


Void for vagueness

Dennis Niles
 

      
As a matter of contract law, will poor wording bar enforcement of a restrictive covenant?   Recorded in 1994, the restriction referenced in my deed reads:

"5.  No exterior antennas, except normal TV antennas will be allowed. Particularly excluded are satellite dishes &
Ham radio and CB radio antennas."

Clearly, the phrases "normal" and "Ham radio" are ambiguous.  Assuming the underlying concern is aesthetic impact, is it not arbitrary to bar antennas no larger than whatever was understood to be "normal" in 1994 based solely on how the antenna is used?  If so, does this invalidate the restriction and obligate the HOA to reasonably accommodate my communication needs?





Private land-Use Restrictions

Steve
 

On page 63 of the newest (April) QST, there is a brief paragraph entitled "Relief from Private Land-Use Restrictions". There is mention of "three legislative approaches" to helping us who have to live under HOA restrictions. I would like to know what the three approaches are, as it seems that previous attempts have died in legislature.
TKS, Steve N2QLQ


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Ray
 

I have been trying to find out what the three approaches are and which one the committee has selected 
Ray
W8LYJ


On Mar 24, 2020, at 18:56, Steve via Groups.Arrl.Org <driller_sm=yahoo.com@...> wrote:

On page 63 of the newest (April) QST, there is a brief paragraph entitled "Relief from Private Land-Use Restrictions". There is mention of "three legislative approaches" to helping us who have to live under HOA restrictions. I would like to know what the three approaches are, as it seems that previous attempts have died in legislature.
TKS, Steve N2QLQ


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

AI3KS
 

Is there any update on this?

Steve, AI3KS


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Mike Polom
 

I received this email in late March from my ARRL Division Director:
"The exact verbiage is still embargoed, pending fine tuning, but here is a synopsis.
1. Legislation which would pass a PRB-1 type exclusion for amateur antennas in HOAs.
2. Legislation which would allow limited amateur antennas in HOAs as an amendment to the OTARD (over the air reception devices) law.
        3. State driven legislation modeled after the flagpole laws and (in Florida) the garden and clothesline laws."

Subsequently, there was a report out by the Legislative Advocacy Committee at the July ARRL BoD Meeting.  The summary of that report out is as follows.
Mr. Tiemstra shared highlights of the report, calling attention to the appendix submitted that morning which included outcomes of their meeting with Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal. He also provided a summary of their work on addressing private land use restrictions, noting the need to address this matter has only grown since it was introduced, adding that they have been meeting at least once a month, have had numerous exchanges with legislators on Capitol Hill, noting that the pandemic has prevented in-person meetings and has slowed their agenda. He added that their messaging is more successful when they define amateur radio as critical infrastructure of emergency service, which is front of mind right now. There was a discussion of the support that our efforts currently have in Washington and moving as quickly as possible on finding co-sponsors; at this time we cannot guarantee the success of anything, but we must continue to maintain a presence and cultivate friendly relationships in order to meet our goals.
There was a also discussion about providing talking points for Board members to use in talking to members about the HOA issue, as well as an ARRL guide for members to use in negotiating tactics on antenna use restrictions with their HOA’s, as our members expect the League to be actively working on these issues, which the Board concurred would be beneficial for all.

The actual report has not been posted to the ARRL Committee Reports website.  On September 11, 2020 I emailed N6JAT, N4MB and KG4JSZ requesting a copy of the whole report and, to date, I have received no reply from any of them.

As far as I can tell, no substantive progress has been made on this issue in the ~10 years it's been a priority at the ARRL.

Mike, NE8P


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Lloyd Colston, KC5FM
 

Did you ask the author?

--
Lloyd Colston, KC5FM


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Bill R
 

We haven't had any luck convincing HOAs to allow even a simple wire dipole so we ended up looking at homes elsewhere.  No easy task, let me tell you.  HOAs and antenna restrictions are very prevalent!

73, Bill  WJ4U


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Mike Polom
 

I mis-typed.  N6JAT should read K6JAT.  K6JAT heads up the Legislative Advocacy Committee.  So, I think the answer to your question is "Yes".
Mike


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Steve
 

Bill, I put 2 antennas in my attic.  A dipole for hf and a discone for vhf.

On Oct 27, 2020 9:45 AM, "Bill R via groups.arrl.org" <kj4vth=verizon.net@...> wrote:
We haven't had any luck convincing HOAs to allow even a simple wire dipole so we ended up looking at homes elsewhere.  No easy task, let me tell you.  HOAs and antenna restrictions are very prevalent!

73, Bill  WJ4U


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

AI3KS
 

Anyone know if there are any updates?

Steve, AI3KS


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Ray
 

I would like to see what is budgeted for this effort?
Ray
W8LYJ


On Oct 27, 2020, at 08:53, Mike Polom <wa8vms@...> wrote:

I mis-typed.  N6JAT should read K6JAT.  K6JAT heads up the Legislative Advocacy Committee.  So, I think the answer to your question is "Yes".
Mike


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Ray
 

Have they talked to the HOA National about this?  Are they having discussions with FCC?
Ray
W8LYJ


On Oct 27, 2020, at 08:39, Mike Polom <wa8vms@...> wrote:

I received this email in late March from my ARRL Division Director:
"The exact verbiage is still embargoed, pending fine tuning, but here is a synopsis.
1. Legislation which would pass a PRB-1 type exclusion for amateur antennas in HOAs.
2. Legislation which would allow limited amateur antennas in HOAs as an amendment to the OTARD (over the air reception devices) law.
        3. State driven legislation modeled after the flagpole laws and (in Florida) the garden and clothesline laws."

Subsequently, there was a report out by the Legislative Advocacy Committee at the July ARRL BoD Meeting.  The summary of that report out is as follows.
Mr. Tiemstra shared highlights of the report, calling attention to the appendix submitted that morning which included outcomes of their meeting with Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal. He also provided a summary of their work on addressing private land use restrictions, noting the need to address this matter has only grown since it was introduced, adding that they have been meeting at least once a month, have had numerous exchanges with legislators on Capitol Hill, noting that the pandemic has prevented in-person meetings and has slowed their agenda. He added that their messaging is more successful when they define amateur radio as critical infrastructure of emergency service, which is front of mind right now. There was a discussion of the support that our efforts currently have in Washington and moving as quickly as possible on finding co-sponsors; at this time we cannot guarantee the success of anything, but we must continue to maintain a presence and cultivate friendly relationships in order to meet our goals.
There was a also discussion about providing talking points for Board members to use in talking to members about the HOA issue, as well as an ARRL guide for members to use in negotiating tactics on antenna use restrictions with their HOA’s, as our members expect the League to be actively working on these issues, which the Board concurred would be beneficial for all.

The actual report has not been posted to the ARRL Committee Reports website.  On September 11, 2020 I emailed N6JAT, N4MB and KG4JSZ requesting a copy of the whole report and, to date, I have received no reply from any of them.

As far as I can tell, no substantive progress has been made on this issue in the ~10 years it's been a priority at the ARRL.

Mike, NE8P


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

 

Yes, they have talked to the National HOA, they are the leading opponent to the act.  They have also discussed this with the FCC, but the FCC says it is not their call until Congress acts.  If you live in an HOA then you need to convince them that emergency communications are good for the HOA.  Then you need to show them that antennas can be erected in such a way as to not interfere with the neighbors view of the world.  In AZ I made my wire antennas out of The Wireman’s 534-Antenna Wire, 26 AWG Copper-Clad Steel Stranded Jacketed antenna wire.  It’s virtually invisible but handles 100watts with no problem.  I had my antenna up for 10 years and no problems in an HOA that strictly forbid ham antennas.  The problem is that people who live in HOA’s picture ham antennas as 70’ towers with lots of aluminum. 

 

One of the problems with passing the law is that the National HOA verbally agreed to a deal where antennas would be allowed but they had to be approved by the HOA and the amateur community didn’t want that.  Much unreasonableness on both sides. 

 

Bob AF9W

 

From: ARRL-Antenna-Law-and-Policy@... <ARRL-Antenna-Law-and-Policy@...> On Behalf Of Ray
Sent: Tuesday, October 27, 2020 10:28 AM
To: ARRL-Antenna-Law-and-Policy@...
Subject: Re: [ARRL-Antenna-Law-and-Policy] Private land-Use Restrictions

 

Have they talked to the HOA National about this?  Are they having discussions with FCC?

Ray

W8LYJ



On Oct 27, 2020, at 08:39, Mike Polom <wa8vms@...> wrote:

I received this email in late March from my ARRL Division Director:

"The exact verbiage is still embargoed, pending fine tuning, but here is a synopsis.

1. Legislation which would pass a PRB-1 type exclusion for amateur antennas in HOAs.

2. Legislation which would allow limited amateur antennas in HOAs as an amendment to the OTARD (over the air reception devices) law.

        3. State driven legislation modeled after the flagpole laws and (in Florida) the garden and clothesline laws."

Subsequently, there was a report out by the Legislative Advocacy Committee at the July ARRL BoD Meeting.  The summary of that report out is as follows.
Mr. Tiemstra shared highlights of the report, calling attention to the appendix submitted that morning which included outcomes of their meeting with Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal. He also provided a summary of their work on addressing private land use restrictions, noting the need to address this matter has only grown since it was introduced, adding that they have been meeting at least once a month, have had numerous exchanges with legislators on Capitol Hill, noting that the pandemic has prevented in-person meetings and has slowed their agenda. He added that their messaging is more successful when they define amateur radio as critical infrastructure of emergency service, which is front of mind right now. There was a discussion of the support that our efforts currently have in Washington and moving as quickly as possible on finding co-sponsors; at this time we cannot guarantee the success of anything, but we must continue to maintain a presence and cultivate friendly relationships in order to meet our goals.
There was a also discussion about providing talking points for Board members to use in talking to members about the HOA issue, as well as an ARRL guide for members to use in negotiating tactics on antenna use restrictions with their HOA’s, as our members expect the League to be actively working on these issues, which the Board concurred would be beneficial for all.

The actual report has not been posted to the ARRL Committee Reports website.  On September 11, 2020 I emailed N6JAT, N4MB and KG4JSZ requesting a copy of the whole report and, to date, I have received no reply from any of them.

As far as I can tell, no substantive progress has been made on this issue in the ~10 years it's been a priority at the ARRL.

Mike, NE8P


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Richard C. Bernhardt
 

Remember the Amateur Radio Parity Act? It was being held up by Senator Bill Nelson of Florida (no longer in office),
and then it just fizzled back in 2018. I have an archive of emails on proposed actions and responses from the ARRL.
As far as I know, it is currently housed in the "tomb of the unknowns".

On 10/16/2020 1:47 PM, AI3KS wrote:
Anyone know if there are any updates?

Steve, AI3KS


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Ray
 

The HOA has millions of dollars to fight any attempt to reduce HOA antenna restrictions. The previous  bill could not even get a vote in the house Committee until ARRL cut a deal with the HOA National Organization.  
So how much money has ARRL budgeted to pay attorneys, lobbyist etc? 
What is different about this latest attempt?

Ray
W8LYJ 


On Oct 27, 2020, at 12:40, Richard C. Bernhardt <rbernhardt@...> wrote:

 Remember the Amateur Radio Parity Act? It was being held up by Senator Bill Nelson of Florida (no longer in office),
and then it just fizzled back in 2018. I have an archive of emails on proposed actions and responses from the ARRL.
As far as I know, it is currently housed in the "tomb of the unknowns".

On 10/16/2020 1:47 PM, AI3KS wrote:
Anyone know if there are any updates?

Steve, AI3KS


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Ray
 

The bill did not fizzle, it was withdraw at the request of ARRL. With Nelson gone it would have passed the new Congress. 
Ray
W8LYJ 


On Oct 27, 2020, at 12:40, Richard C. Bernhardt <rbernhardt@...> wrote:

 Remember the Amateur Radio Parity Act? It was being held up by Senator Bill Nelson of Florida (no longer in office),
and then it just fizzled back in 2018. I have an archive of emails on proposed actions and responses from the ARRL.
As far as I know, it is currently housed in the "tomb of the unknowns".

On 10/16/2020 1:47 PM, AI3KS wrote:
Anyone know if there are any updates?

Steve, AI3KS


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Ray
 

Remember the bill was just the authorization for the FCC to write rules allowing amateur radio antennas,  Authority the FCC said in PRB that they did not have. 

In the past amateur Bill, the HOAs would be required by the FCC rules to let hams have effective antennas. So basically the HOA  could not say no even though they had to give approval. 

The big issue the HOAs had with OTARD was residents could put up a satellite/TV antenna and the first the HOA would know was when they walked by the house. 

Ray
W8LYJ 


On Oct 27, 2020, at 12:40, Bob AF9W <af9w@...> wrote:



Yes, they have talked to the National HOA, they are the leading opponent to the act.  They have also discussed this with the FCC, but the FCC says it is not their call until Congress acts.  If you live in an HOA then you need to convince them that emergency communications are good for the HOA.  Then you need to show them that antennas can be erected in such a way as to not interfere with the neighbors view of the world.  In AZ I made my wire antennas out of The Wireman’s 534-Antenna Wire, 26 AWG Copper-Clad Steel Stranded Jacketed antenna wire.  It’s virtually invisible but handles 100watts with no problem.  I had my antenna up for 10 years and no problems in an HOA that strictly forbid ham antennas.  The problem is that people who live in HOA’s picture ham antennas as 70’ towers with lots of aluminum. 

 

One of the problems with passing the law is that the National HOA verbally agreed to a deal where antennas would be allowed but they had to be approved by the HOA and the amateur community didn’t want that.  Much unreasonableness on both sides. 

 

Bob AF9W

 

From: ARRL-Antenna-Law-and-Policy@... <ARRL-Antenna-Law-and-Policy@...> On Behalf Of Ray
Sent: Tuesday, October 27, 2020 10:28 AM
To: ARRL-Antenna-Law-and-Policy@...
Subject: Re: [ARRL-Antenna-Law-and-Policy] Private land-Use Restrictions

 

Have they talked to the HOA National about this?  Are they having discussions with FCC?

Ray

W8LYJ



On Oct 27, 2020, at 08:39, Mike Polom <wa8vms@...> wrote:

I received this email in late March from my ARRL Division Director:

"The exact verbiage is still embargoed, pending fine tuning, but here is a synopsis.

1. Legislation which would pass a PRB-1 type exclusion for amateur antennas in HOAs.

2. Legislation which would allow limited amateur antennas in HOAs as an amendment to the OTARD (over the air reception devices) law.

        3. State driven legislation modeled after the flagpole laws and (in Florida) the garden and clothesline laws."

Subsequently, there was a report out by the Legislative Advocacy Committee at the July ARRL BoD Meeting.  The summary of that report out is as follows.
Mr. Tiemstra shared highlights of the report, calling attention to the appendix submitted that morning which included outcomes of their meeting with Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal. He also provided a summary of their work on addressing private land use restrictions, noting the need to address this matter has only grown since it was introduced, adding that they have been meeting at least once a month, have had numerous exchanges with legislators on Capitol Hill, noting that the pandemic has prevented in-person meetings and has slowed their agenda. He added that their messaging is more successful when they define amateur radio as critical infrastructure of emergency service, which is front of mind right now. There was a discussion of the support that our efforts currently have in Washington and moving as quickly as possible on finding co-sponsors; at this time we cannot guarantee the success of anything, but we must continue to maintain a presence and cultivate friendly relationships in order to meet our goals.
There was a also discussion about providing talking points for Board members to use in talking to members about the HOA issue, as well as an ARRL guide for members to use in negotiating tactics on antenna use restrictions with their HOA’s, as our members expect the League to be actively working on these issues, which the Board concurred would be beneficial for all.

The actual report has not been posted to the ARRL Committee Reports website.  On September 11, 2020 I emailed N6JAT, N4MB and KG4JSZ requesting a copy of the whole report and, to date, I have received no reply from any of them.

As far as I can tell, no substantive progress has been made on this issue in the ~10 years it's been a priority at the ARRL.

Mike, NE8P


Re: Private land-Use Restrictions

Mike Polom
 

Yes, there's been some recent talk per my earlier post, but zero results.  This has been an ongoing effort at the ARRL for 10 years.  I know this:  If I'd been assigned some important project/task when I worked for General Motors, I'd have never been employed long enough to be giving a 10 year status report as summarized in the July BoD report out.  I'd have been terminated 9 years ago.

While your 100 watt, stealth dipole solution may have satisfied you, Bob, for me there's no joy in chasing DX or operating in major contests with such a nominal antenna.  (..... all the while worried the HOA police might discover my nefariousness)

As new housing developments all include these restrictions an increasing number of hams (and want to be hams) have little to no antenna, which makes the amateur radio sphere shrink, perhaps to a radius of zero at some point.  Yes, I know amazing distances can be covered with FT8/4, but there's no joy there for me either.  I need to process the QSO, not the computer.

For me, if the ARRL doesn't come up with something that potentially allows a modest tower with aluminum at the top in an HOA controlled subdivision, then they will have FAILED, and I will either need to move or exit ham radio after 50+ years.

Mike, NE8P

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