For 100 years amateur radio has played a vital role in the technological development of the United States and continues to do so today. Thousands of scientists and engineers got started in electronics and communications careers as a result of an early interest in amateur radio. Many of today’s scientists and engineers, as well as others in less technical fields, continue to enjoy amateur radio. Amateur radio is an activity that has a demonstrated history of “paying off” for society.
Radio amateurs have a proud tradition of making their skills and equipment available for backup and auxiliary emergency communications in times of disaster - at no cost to taxpayers. The Amateur Radio Service provides a layer of redundancy - a most desirable feature of any communications system.
Unreasonable and unnecessary land use restrictions are now near universal in prohibiting the erection of antennas essential for amateur radio communications in most residential developments constructed in recent decades. Homeowner’s and property owner’s associations have usurped the legitimate authority of the Federal Communications Commission in this area of telecommunications. This has had a detrimental effect upon the development of the Amateur Radio Service and, as a consequence, it has had a negative effect upon our ability to provide emergency communications during times of disaster.
We request the Federal Communications Commission to take whatever steps are necessary to immediately void all existing private land use restrictions dealing with antennas used for the transmission or reception of radio signals and to disallow any future creation of such restrictions by private homeowner’s and property owner’s associations. We further request that the Federal Communications Commission consider the establishment of reasonable criteria for permitting the erection of antennas in private residential areas.