Update as of January 29 2021
Some time in late 2020 in response to about the 10th request the City sent me an email from the City Attorney quoting a court case that said that a city cannot regulate the operation of cell antennas. It was about one sentence in the court opinion and the court did not really address the issue. The court said that the TCA of 1996 did not create any city or local regulatory authority over the operation of cell antennas. That is not the point. The point is that cities and local governments already had the regulatory authority over the operation of cell antennas and the TCA specifically said that it preserves all local zoning authority except for the specific exceptions mentioned. There is no exception for regulating the operation of cell antennas. That argument could be won by the plaintiffs if properly presented in court but I have not seen any such court opinion. For now at least, and maybe forever, I am dropping the idea of getting the City to regulate the operation of cell antennas.
The 1995 draft of the bill that became the Telecommunications Act of 1996 said that local governments could not regulate the placement, construction, modification or operation of cell antennas. Notice the word “operation”. Think about what that means.
The actual bill that became the Telecommunications Act of 1996 preempted local government regulation of the placement, construction, and modification of cell antennas. It omitted the word “operation”. Obviously this was deliberate. In other words Congress still allows local government to regulate the operation of cell antennas. This page presents the actual quotations from the 1995 draft and the 1996 law with hyperlinks so you can read it and check it. Please do!
Because WordPress chooses to make a block out of every single line of text when I copy and paste from the word processor file I am going to show you screen shots. But you have the links and you can read the originals on the Congress web site.
1995 draft of TCA
1996 final TCA