State & Judicial Federal Decisions

New Jersey Decisions

Smart v. Fair Lawn, 152 Nc.J. 309 (1998)

Proposed mobile communications facility which required the construction of a monopole was not inherently beneficial, but Next Communications was entitled to use variance for 140-foot telecommunications monopole in an industrial zone because the facility would serve the general welfare without substantial detriment to the public good.

Federal Decisions

City of Arlington v. FCC, 133 S. Ct. 1863 (2013)

“In the Telecommunications Act of 1996, Congress ‘imposed[d] specific limitations on the traditional authority of state and local governments to regulate the location, construction, and modification of such facilities,’ [citation omitted]… Section 201(b) of that Act empowers the Federal Communications Commission to ‘prescribe such rules and regulations as may be necessary in the public interest to carry out [its] provisions.’ [citation omitted]. The Act imposes five substantive limitations, which are codified in 47 U.S.C. § 332(c)(7)(B); only one of them, § 332(c)(7)(B)(ii), is at issue here. That provision requires state or local government to act on wireless siting applications ‘within a reasonable period of time after the request is duly filed.’… In November 2009, the Commission, relying on its broad statutory authority to implement the provisions of the Communications Act, issues a declaratory ruling [and held that] [a] ‘reasonable period of time’ under § 332(c)(7)(B)(ii)… is presumptively (but rebuttably) 90 days to proves a collocation application (that is, an application to place a new antenna on an existing tower) and 150 days to process all other applications. The FCC’s declaratory ruling is upheld because a court must defer to an agency’s interpretation of a statutory ambiguity that concerns the scope of the agency’s jurisdiction.”