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Author Topic: Tower restrictions, any attorneys or experienced hams? Need help  (Read 67717 times)
KF7CG
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Posts: 864




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« Reply #45 on: December 25, 2010, 09:14:42 PM »

There are several other things that could and maybe should be done in this area by all the Amateurs of the area. All emergency and third party volunteer work by Amateurs should be curtailed. It is abundantly clear that the dont want any Amateurs if they are unwilling to simply borrow a working tower regualation from any of the other nearby townships and wish to place unreasonable costs on someone who by law can not profit from their hobby.

If Amateur radio support structures are not tolerated, then Amateurs on not welcome and should not force themselves on the community especially when it is to help.

Do they permit silos without "conditional use permits"? A silo is an inherently more dangerous structure than a tower. Not only does a silo have significant height, it contains a significant amount of material the contributes to the loading and so on of the silo. Further if the contents of a silo are not properly loaded and cared for a silo becomes a significant fire and explosion hazard.  Silos containing grain and other similar dry materials must be properly guarded against dust and static electric build up lest large explosions and fires occur.  Silos containing green materials must be properly vented and the contents correctly managed to prevent the buildup of methane and hydrogen sulfide gases. Methane readily causes explosions (ala a coal mine explosion) when allowed to build to too high a concentration. Hydrogen sulfide is highly toxic and has caused several deaths from people entering highly contaminated areas. This tends to put the safety issue in another light.

KF7CG
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K1CJS
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« Reply #46 on: December 26, 2010, 09:38:34 AM »

One thing is apparant, those fees are meant to make cell phone companies and cell phone tower installers think twice before putting up too many cell phone towers--and that is what the township is trying to stop from happening.  To them, an amateur radio tower is a radio tower is a cellphone tower.....

Just maybe, if you spoke to the township lawyer, you could get the fees waived if you put an agreement clause into the application that you would not have or even think of having ANY cell phone equipment on that tower--that it was just for amateur radio useage.

I know full well that it's a long shot, but it's meant simply as a suggestion that just may open a door to you.
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KI4SDY
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Posts: 1452




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« Reply #47 on: December 26, 2010, 11:54:41 AM »

At this point, N2EY's comments about #3 and #4 on his post are the best way to go. You cannot erase what has been done.  Cry

I also like the previous comment about the wind water tower. Much easier to permit and may be just as sturdy, if not more so. He can look for "wind water towers" and price them to see how much he will need to get for the "antenna tower." when he sells it. I would wait a while before trying to permit the water tower, however.  Wink

Sometimes, you have to take another road to get where you want to go.  Grin
« Last Edit: December 26, 2010, 12:10:52 PM by Guy "Vern" Wells » Logged
WX7G
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« Reply #48 on: December 26, 2010, 12:13:26 PM »

If I'm interpreting the first several posts correctly a dipole in the trees was performing satisfactorily until it broke. The first one broke due to possible vandalism and the second broke due to a tree falling over.

Could a solution be to install another dipole made of stout material (stranded copper weld #531 from The Wireman fed with #554 ladder line) with proper shock mounting? Could another solution be a "temporary" mast such as a 40-50' wooden A-frame al la the ARRL Handbook? I've built these to 40' using 2 x 3 lumber.

Wire antennas are not forever and a means of restringing them from the ground can be provided for those times when the wire fails.

The tower can be sold to purchase an amp and a high power antenna tuner.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2010, 12:21:41 PM by DAVE CUTHBERT » Logged
KF7CG
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Posts: 864




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« Reply #49 on: December 26, 2010, 01:11:17 PM »

As for the adequacy of wind-water towers for Amateur use, these towers in their smallest capacities are sufficient for all but the largest of Amateurs antennas. Just look at the wind surface area exposed by beams as opposed to the wind surface area of a turbane disk that is design to seek maximum areal exposure to the wind. The surface area for a windmill (water pumping style0 is approximate PI times half the diameter of the turbane disk squared even the smallest windmills tend to have wind areas of 30 square feet or better. The weight loading of the head, gearing, and drivehaft for a water pump also greatly exceed the weight loading of most antenna rotator combinations.

Taken from any angle, the decisions of the zoning board are to disallow radio (any radio) towers in their jurisdiction.

As to the use the trees argument, from the description of the property it is part of a wood lot. This is no place to try to maintain wire antennas; trees or limbs are always falling. A friend near me has a home in part of an old wood lot for his yard, he is always clearing shed limbs and downed trees from the property. Even with strong wire, the falling limbs etc could take out the antennas on a regular basis.

KF7CG
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AA2HA
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« Reply #50 on: December 26, 2010, 03:49:50 PM »

Wow, what a tough crowd. I posted in hope of finding some guidance, ideas and possible helpful solutions. I hadn't anticipated being judged and belittled by a few, but such is the nature of the world.
 Just to be clear, as my writing skills and ability to coherently translate the chronological chain of events leading up to my current situation, may not be clear. I am, after all a product of the New Jersey school system Smiley
 I formerly lived in Nutley, NJ. I was a Union electrician for over 30 years and worked two jobs most of my adult life. I was involved in an accident where I was hit by a drunk driver (who didn't survive). Never a person to live beyond my means, I was forced to sell my home in Nutley (the property taxes alone were over 12K/yesr for a 1200 sq. ft. home on a 50' X 100' plot of land.
 I was fortunate enough to have purchased the home as a young man. The house was "trashed" and I spent three years fixing it myself in my spare time. I was also fortunate enough to have sold it at a good price.
 I spent months looking for a modestly price home with reasonable taxes. I found this home (which is at one of the highest points in the county). I am in a "private community" and absolutely tried to do my homework as best as I could before purchasing. I checked for CC&R and secured a letter from the community stating that I able to erect a tower.
 Next I visited the township zoning official that advised me that "no towers are allowed on private property." After presenting PA bill (act 88 and PRB-1) I was advised that "clearly this doesn't apply to me." and that the township "does not have any ordinances restricting amateur antennas or support structures." He added, and I quote "I'm sure we'll be able to accommodate you." NOTE- That zoning official is on sick leave and the decision was left to the township solicitor.
 Couple this with PA Senate Bill (act 88) that forbids any municipality in Pennsylvania from restricting any amateur antenna support structure under 65 feet in height, I though I had done my homework, or had satisfied myself that I would be able to proceed. ONLY after this did I put an offer on my current home. To support a position that It's "my own fault" isn't consistent with the facts. Blame or finger pointing wasn't my goal here, some may well feel that it's my own fault, (and that opinion may indeed be true) but the intention of this post was to seek assistance from my fellow hams, not point fingers. The reality is that this is where I am at, I'm trying to look forward not back.
 I purchase a home that cost much less than my former home, the taxes are 1/4 of the former and car insurance is 1/3. I never expected to have to defend myself or justify my financial situation here. It seems to bother some that now disabled, and on Social Security, I have the nerve to spend money on recreational endeavors. It may comfort you to know that I have had to sell most of my personal belongings, including my vehicles to pay mounting medical bills. And yes, I did sell my 25-year antique radio collection (all of which I restored) to make ends meet.
 I have extremely little left to show for my lifetime of hard work, but my integrity is one which I will never compromise. I'm not looking for a free ride, I pay my bills, taxes, and try to do the best I can with what I have.
 A sincere thanks to the folks that have tried to help. I have a meeting at the township building on Tuesday the 28th where I'll make one final plea. I'll keep everyone posted on the outcome. I try to meet each day with optimism in all areas. If the township decision isn't in my favor, check the forums for a good price on a tower.  73, Tim
« Last Edit: December 26, 2010, 03:59:41 PM by Tim McDowall » Logged
WX7G
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Posts: 6201




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« Reply #51 on: December 26, 2010, 04:53:17 PM »

Tim,

good luck with the meeting. I find amateur radio to be an anchor during tough times and I hope it brings you comfort too. 73.
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K1CJS
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Posts: 6055




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« Reply #52 on: December 27, 2010, 06:56:56 AM »

Tim,

I'll add my best wishes for a positive outcome.  I hope you can convince those bowbs that you're only trying to put up an amateur radio antenna system for your personal enjoyment and not something that is going to be installed by a national telecommunications company.

Let us know how you made out!

73, Chris, K1CJS
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W3LK
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« Reply #53 on: December 27, 2010, 07:24:20 AM »

Hang in there, Tim.
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A smoking section in a restaurant makes as much sense as a peeing section in a swimming pool.
AB4D
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« Reply #54 on: December 27, 2010, 08:10:33 AM »

Tim,

As I pointed out in my earlier post, now is the time to do your homework. If you can afford to do so, put together a handout package  for the board members, which gives the necessary background information required to make an educated decision.  Your package should included copies of general information about the ARS from the FCC, PRB-1, and you state statue concerning placement of amateur radio towers.

You should make it your responsibility to ensure the board has the information needed to rule in your favor.

Good Luck

Jim/AB4D
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KI4SDY
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Posts: 1452




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« Reply #55 on: December 27, 2010, 08:56:45 AM »

Having worked in government for most of my life, I can tell you that if you find a government official that is sympathetic to your cause and sees things your way, if you go back and he is on vacation, you need to wait until he returns and drink where the water is good.  Wink

I am hoping that he is back and will be part of the proceedings in your hearing. If not, I would ask for a postponement and go see him. The hearing may not be necessary.  Grin

Glad to hear that you finally moved out of the socialist State of New Jersey with $12,000 a year in property taxes. Too bad it took a car accident to do it. By the way, if you don't mind telling us, what kind of disabilities do you currently have? Are you in a wheelchair or do you have basically good mobility? 
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AA2HA
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Posts: 16




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« Reply #56 on: December 28, 2010, 11:12:22 PM »

UPDATE: I went to the township meeting tonight and at first, they weren't even going to let me speak. My XYL went and would have none of that. She stood up and made her voice heard loud and clear. I'd also like to thank Dr. Jay Joerger (NM2M) for attending and having his voice heard as well. (a fellow ham and all around nice guy)
 After an "executive meeting" the township agreed to add an amateur radio clause to local zoning and as soon as the exception is written, (mid-January) I WILL be issued my permit! This will pave the way and make it easy for any other ham to erect a tower within the township with a simple zoning application!
 Thanks to all the support and encouragement from my radio brothers here, I still can't believe I will actually have the tower up this spring. I haven't had a better Christmas present since I was a child!
 73 and hope to hear you on the air this spring!
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KF7CG
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Posts: 864




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« Reply #57 on: December 29, 2010, 04:10:09 AM »

Congratulations! Merry Christmas and a Happy and QSO filled New Year!

Here is hoping that the powers that be can do the impossible and satisfy the Amateurs of the area while also satisfying the other citizens of the area.

KF7CG
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K1CJS
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Posts: 6055




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« Reply #58 on: December 29, 2010, 04:12:47 AM »

Very glad to hear of the positive outcome!  Good luck and we'll be looking for you on the bands!
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KB3KWJ
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Posts: 8




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« Reply #59 on: December 29, 2010, 06:27:36 AM »

Hi Tim,

I have been following your story and I am very happy that you are going to get your tower up soon!!!  In the future I would like a tower and I am not sure what my township will do in my case but your case gives me hope!

Have a Happy and Joyful New Year for you and your XYL!

John
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