U.S. Supreme Court

Case Status


Docket Number


2014 Term


Questions Presented

Whether a document from a state or local government stating that an application has been denied, but providing no reasons whatsoever for the denial, can satisfy the Communications Act’s “in writing” requirement.

Case Updates

U.S. Supreme Court reverses holding that under the Telecommunications Act, a state or local government must provide written reasoning for denying an application

January 14, 2015

The Court reversed the judgment of the Eleventh Ciruit finding that local governments are required under the Federal Telecommunications Act to provide a timely written explanation for rejecting a request.

U.S. Chamber files amicus brief

July 10, 2014

In the coalition brief, the Chamber urged the Supreme Court of the United States to reverse the judgment of the Eleventh Circuit and properly interpret the Telecommunications Act of 1996 which properly removed state and local barriers to accelerate the deployment of wireless infrastructure factilities. The brief points out that one of the key procedural protections of the Act requires that and state or local decision to deny construction or placement of a wireless facility must provide written reasoning for their decision. The brief argues that any practice to delay the deployment of wireless infrastructure is detrimental to growing the nation’s economy. Both the Fourth and Eleventh Circuit’s interpretations of the Act were not in congruence with Congress’ initial intentions. A proper interpretation of the Act is necessary in order to properly limit state and local authority and encourage the rapid deployment of wireless infrastructure throughout the country.

The brief was filed jointly with the National Federation of Independent Business.

William S. Consovoy, Johsua S. Turner and Megan L. Brown of Wiley Rein, LLP represented the U.S. Chamber of Commerce as co-counsel to the U.S. Chamber Litigation Center.

Case Documents