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ARRL General Bulletin ARLB106 (1995)

ARLB106 PRB-1 clone in MA

ARRL Bulletin 106  ARLB106
From ARRL Headquarters
Newington CT  November 30, 1995
To all radio amateurs

ARLB106 PRB-1 clone in MA

A new law in Massachusetts will put the language of the FCC's
federal preemption of state and local laws affecting amateurs
(PRB-1) on the books in that state when it takes effect next year.

H-2782, a bill in the Massachusetts legislature, was written by ARRL
Volunteer Counsel Thomas Carrigan, WA1NVS, in 1992. The bill was
passed by both chambers of the legislature earlier this year, then
sent back to the legislature by Governor William Weld, for
modification.  Both chambers of the legislature then enacted the
bill in the last week of this year's legislative session and sent it
to the governor, who signed the bill into law on November 21.

The bill becomes law 90 days after signing, and is assigned to
Chapter 225 of the Massachusetts General Laws.

Eastern Massachusetts ARRL Section Manager Phil Temples, K9HI, said
''Like PRB-1, the new Chapter 225 does not give amateurs a green
light to do anything they want to do with their antennas.  You are
still bound by the zoning laws of your city or town, and you will
still have to go through the same process for approval that you have
to go through now.

''So what's the difference?  Now, when you go to your town hall, you
can point to Chapter 225 as requiring that local regulations be
reasonable.  If you should find it necessary to go to court for
satisfaction, you can choose state court or federal court.  State
court trials would be less expensive, but the precedents set in
PRB-1 cases do not transfer to Massachusetts courts,'' Temples said.

Carrigan has written a primer for Massachusetts hams on what the new
law means.  It is available on the World Wide Web at

Temples also suggested that Massachusetts amateurs who contacted
their representatives and senators in support of H-2782 now send a
note thanking them for their support.


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