I am a Brooklyn boy that ran a communications business in Midtown Manhattan
for 15 years.  I had rooftops secured before anyone knew what they were
worth.  We leased space to Winstar (Ouch!), all the paging companies ( more
ouch) and ran several 20 channel SMR systems in  addition to about 80 UHF

I can certainly push when there is a value to it, but this was just too easy
to walk away from.  This was in West Virginia, and we had reached out to
Sen. Jay Rockefeller on this project as he is a champion of rural broadband.

The mayor, and entire city council in this town was fully aware of the
importance of this to him.  They called us to "hurry things along".  When we
asked if that included granting a variance to simplify things, the answer
was a resounding no.

So much for outside influence.


-----Original Message-----
Behalf Of Jack Unger
Sent: Tuesday, August 12, 2008 11:43 AM
To: WISPA General List
Subject: Re: [WISPA] Tower site licensing problem

There were many good on-list responses to your post so I'll be short 
here with my comments.

Local jurisdictions can't prohibit your tower but your tower is subject 
to their local zoning rules and regulations.

Co-location requirements are often made to minimize the number of towers 
in an area in order to avoid ruining the beauty or the character of the 
area with too many towers.

Local officials (just like people everywhere these days)  don't  know 
the difference between wireless technologies (Wi-Fi, Wi-Max, cellular... 
it's all "wireless"). Educate these local officials about the financial 
and service differences between your small local company and a large 
deep-pocketed cellphone company. If you don't educate them about these 
differences, no one else will.

If this tower and this business is truly important to you, don't try to 
"cheap it out". Find a local land use attorney, spend the money to hire 
them and then use them to "push back" and help you educate the county 
planning department. You should only need to do this once before the 
planning department starts to understand your operation and cooperate 
with you.

If you still get resistance, be ready to go to your local County 
Commissioners to ask for their support for your efforts to bridge the 
"digital divide" and provide broadband Internet access to the people who 
voted to elect them and who trusted them to do what is right for the 
local citizens.

I hope you find this information useful.


Isp Operator wrote:
> Hi Gang,
> We recently received notice that one of our locations has received the 
> interest of our county planning department, who has determined that the 
> location requires a 'use permit' for a major impact utility location 
> (eg: Cellular telephone). Naturally, we strongly disagree with this 
> determination.
> The site is in a remote location, on private property completely out of 
> view of anybody(*), solar powered, on a 25' mast, with only the most 
> basic of equipment installed including two access points with an omni 
> and a sector. Aside from being 'outdoors', really, there's no 
> resemblance to a 'cellphone tower' as the gear is equivalent to what 
> most people use for their home wireless networks, albeit with slightly 
> larger externally mounted antennas. The planning department DID NOT cite 
> any building codes or height restrictions, just that we seem to be 
> 'transmitting' as well as 'receiving', and we're certain that the 
> determination has to do ONLY with the fact that it's a wireless repeater 
> and otherwise wouldn't receive any attention at all if it was a wind 
> generator, weather station or other application.
> The substantial weight of the use permit process they wish us to go thru 
> is exactly that for a major cellphone site, complete with hefty 
> application fees, public hearings, zoning approvals, and the whole nine 
> yards. Assuming we made it all the way thru the process, we would then 
> also be required to build it up with severe site upgrades including fire 
> access and other features, which is simply too much overkill and we 
> would not be able to comply.
> Isn't there some kind of exemption or otard-similar ruling or legal 
> guidelines from the fcc regarding this type of situation?  I can only 
> imagine that the criteria cited would also apply to many, many other 
> uses of part-15 devices and that the regulations just predate (2001 in 
> our case) the real onslaught of linksys in every home. I also imagine 
> that there would be substantial damage if every wisp was required to get 
> cellphone tower permits for every single repeater in use according to 
> these strict interpretations. We're going to need more than common sense 
> here, we're going to need legal precedence or references to directly 
> refute this determination, and we would appreciate your help.
> Thanks all.
> (* We were turned in by a certain tin hat, who has been dogging us for 
> some time now and attempting to create sympathy for their extreme views 
> which we are sure you all are aware of. Just one more reason to not 
> share detailed system information with anybody....)
Jack Unger - President, Ask-Wi.Com, Inc.
Serving the Broadband Wireless Industry Since 1993
Cisco Press Author - "Deploying License-Free Wireless WANs"
NEXT ONLINE TRAINING AUGUST 18-19 2008 <http://www.linktechs.net/askwi.asp>
FCC Lic. #PG-12-25133 LinkedIn Profile
Phone 818-227-4220  Email <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>

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