Federal Communications Law Journal

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Citation

50 Federal Communications Law Journal 441 (1998)


Section 253 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 was promulgated in an effort to remove unnecessary regulation by local governments and open up competition among local phone companies, cable providers, and other telecommunications concerns. However, this provision effectively prohibits local governments from managing their rights-of-way. Furthermore, it violates modern Fifth Amendment takings jurisprudence, Section 253 and the first three FCC and court decisions examining it not only have jeopardized effective municipal management and resource allocation discretion, but also have usurped local governments' property rights without just compensation in explicit violation of the United States Constitution.