Tuesday, November 17, 2009

FCC Sets 90 to 150 Day Review Limit for Tower Applications

FCC has set new timeframes of 90 days for collocations and 150 days for all other tower siting applications reviewed by state and local governments.

The FCC said its action is aimed at speeding the deployment of next generation wireless networks while respecting the legitimate concerns of local authorities and preserving local control over zoning and land use policies.

Congress specifically requires that state and local authorities act "within a reasonable period of time" on requests for tower siting.

While most state and local jurisdictions currently process tower siting applications in a timely fashion, the FCC found that there are many instances of unnecessary delays. In order to
ensure a timely review of these applications and to prevent unnecessary delay, the FCC interprets a "reasonable period of time" as 90 days for collocations and 150 days for all other towers. If a jurisdiction "fails to act" on the application within this reasonable time period, applicants may file a claim for relief in court within 30 days of the failure to act. The court will then decide what action to take based on all the facts of the case.