Monday, September 11, 2023

APA accepting public comment on wireless stations permit process until Sept. 29

APA logo.

Ray Brook, NY-  The Adirondack Park Agency (APA) is accepting public comment on a proposed new general permit to expedite the review for co-location, removal, or replacement of transmission equipment (eligible facilities requests) on existing wireless facilities or base stations inside the Adirondack Park that meet certain eligibility criteria.

Eligible facilities requests are defined under Section 6409 of the Spectrum Act of 2012 and implementing regulations 47 CFR 1.6100. They are considered any request for modification of an existing wireless tower or base station that does not substantially change the physical dimensions of such tower or base station.

The APA will accept public comment on proposed general permit 2023-G1 until September 29th, 2023.


The Adirondack Park Agency proposes to issue a new General Permit/Order that will:

  1. Be available for use throughout the Adirondack Park;
  2. Be effective from the date of issuance unless otherwise modified or revoked by the Agency;
  3. Authorize jurisdictional activities for structures in excess of forty feet in height and major public utility uses, and/or as new land use or development pursuant to §§ 809, 810, and 814 of the Executive Law (the Adirondack Park Agency Act) and Executive Order 150; and/or for activities within designated river areas pursuant to Article 15, Title 27, of the Environmental Conservation Law (the Wild, Scenic, and Recreational Rivers System Act) and 9 NYCRR Part 577; and/or for activities involving wetlands pursuant to Article 24 of the Environmental Conservation Law (the Freshwater Wetlands Act), Executive Law §§ 809(2)(a) and 810(1), and 9 NYCRR § 578.2(a).
  4. Allow for certain modifications of existing wireless towers or base stations that do not substantially change the physical dimensions of such towers or base stations and involves co-location, removal, or replacement of transmission equipment. These modifications may only occur on any existing wireless towers or base stations and are frequently undertaken by telecommunications and tower companies;
  5. Include relevant mitigating conditions and conclusions of law, as specified in the general permit. The certification for the General Permit/Order will include standard conditions related to compliance with applicable laws, regulations, and the submitted project plans; color; lighting; invasive species spread prevention; documentation of construction; and discontinuance of use, as well as optional conditions related to vegetative cutting; additional screening; machinery restriction at high elevation; and wetland protection, as applicable; and
  6. Include procedures for the issuance of a certificate pursuant to the general permit, as specified in the general permit. The Agency will issue a signed certification approving the project, pursuant to federal law, within 60 calendar days of receipt of a complete application for a proposal that meets the eligibility criteria.


This general permit will support the APA’s dual goal to help expedite improved cellular coverage within the park while maintaining the unparalleled scenic character of the Adirondacks.

Please see the APA’s website for additional information and to review all relevant materials.

Link – Adirondack Park Agency Regulatory Programs Monthly Mailing (

Please send all comment to:

Ariel Lynch

NYS Adirondack Park Agency

PO Box 99, 1133 NYS Route 86

Ray Brook, NY 12977


Phone: 518-891-4050

Comment Period ends: 9/29/2023

Working in partnership with telecommunication providers, to date the APA has issued 559 permits for telecommunication projects insider the Adirondack Park including 157 new tower permits.  For detailed information and maps please goto APA website – Adirondack Park Agency Towers Information (


The mission of the Adirondack Park Agency is to protect the public and private resources of the Adirondack Park through the exercise of the powers and duties of the Agency as provided by law.


Photo at top: APA logo. Image courtesy of the Adirondack Park Agency.



Related Stories

Community news stories come from press releases and other notices from organizations, businesses, state agencies and other groups. Submit your contributions to Almanack Editor Melissa Hart at


2 Responses

  1. Here is the part of the proposal that contradicts the APA’s claim that increases of only 10% would be allowed with this proposed general permit. In reality, this would allow height increases up to 20 feet on existing towers that are mostly 100 feet tall and less. It would allow 200% increases in width of towers, by allowing expansion equal to the tower width, in all directions.

    General permits are issued by staff, with no notice to the public and no vote of the APA board.

    It seems like these changes would allow towers that were successfully concealed on the landscape by the APA’s towers policy to become instantly the most visible object on the landscape. That would undo a couple of decades of careful stewardship of the park’s wild character.

    The FCC rejected a similar proposal about a decade ago. The APA should halt this ill-conceived plan.

    Below is from the APA’s online presentation (slide 34;

    What is an Eligible Facilities Request (EFR)?

    For towers not in public rights-of-way
     Limits to height
    • Not > 10% increase
    • Not > height of one additional antenna array with
    separation from nearest existing antenna ≤ 20 feet
    • Of the two height limits, whichever is greater is allowed

     Limits to width – protrude from edge of tower
    • Not > 20 feet
    • Not > width of tower structure at level of appurtenance
    • Of the two width limits, whichever is greater is allowed

    • Beverly says:

      John – with all due respect, what on earth are you talking about? Eligible Facility Requests are specifically defined in federal law. Federal law preempts local and state governments from denying these minor changes to existing towers. As indicated in the presentation, they have to be minor changes as defined by the federal law and further defined as not defeating any existing concealment measures to qualify as an eligible facility. If you read the presentation you would see that the APA has been handling these EFR requests for years under an existing general permit and is creating this new general permit as a way to differentiate between EFR and non-EFR projects.

Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Wait! Before you go:

Catch up on all your Adirondack
news, delivered weekly to your inbox