The Business Council opposes S.682 amending the New York City Administrative Code to establish regulations pertaining to the issuance of an “alteration permit” for cellular antennas. The regulations would require the commissioner of the NYC Department of Buildings (DOB) to:
- Consider the aggregate total number of antennas currently in existence and proposed for the subject property at the time the permit application is submitted;
- Maintain public records of all alteration permits for cellular telephone or similar services; and
- Conduct site inspections within 30 days after issuance of alteration permits
We believe this proposed legislation may violate the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (Telecom Act) and Section 6409 of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 (“TRA”) which prevents local governments from limiting the ability of telecommunications carriers to provide telecommunications service and from imposing any restrictions in relation to health and/or safety regarding the installation of cellular antennas.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has already established requirements for installation of cellular antennas which makes the conduct site inspections required under the bill completely unnecessary. Additional inspections by local officials will only impede the progress of wireless infrastructure projects resulting in delayed service upgrades and expansion to NYC wireless consumers. In addition, record keeping requirements are completely unnecessary because the NYC DOB already maintains records of each wireless installation.
For these reasons, The Business Council respectfully opposes of S.682.