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Bankrupt Limitless Mobile wants to reject 140 cell tower leases; creditors cry foul

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: January 27, 2017 –  The bankruptcy court has agreed to a revised motion to reject the leases of Limitless Mobile. It stated, “For each Lease, any Tower Equipment remaining on or at the Tower or the associated premises is hereby deemed abandoned pursuant to section 554 of the Bankruptcy Code, effective January 30, 2017.” Tower owners can now remove …

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Corrupt owner dipped into $27 million of FCC broadband funds to support his lavish lifestyle

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

While the FCC announced Tuesday that it is freeing up an additional $51 million annually in subsidies for 35 companies to build out broadband infrastructure in rural areas, it was also anxious to see if Sandwich Isles Communications, Inc., (SIC) of Hawaii had paid its $50 million fine due by Jan. 4, 2017 for receiving $250 million in funding with “substantial amounts of that …

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FCC cell tower Ponzi scheme ensnares a Puerto Rico mayor charged with extortion

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

The mayor of Gurabo, Puerto Rico was arrested yesterday on charges of extortion and soliciting a bribe for allegedly using his municipality’s money to invest in a $15 million Ponzi scheme that was structured around investors being able to reap handsome profits from their investments in FCC cell tower administration contracts. According to the indictment, on or about October 2012, the …

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Judge puts overtime pay hike on hold for many wireless workers

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Coal in the stocking for some employees, a New Year’s present for their employers Many wireless industry workers in office management and construction-related positions earning more than $455 per week who were exempt from overtime pay, were assured of an increase in their paycheck beginning Dec. 1, 2016 when a new federal regulation kicked in. But two days before Thanksgiving, …

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CCI Antenna wins in CommScope patent dispute

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) today denied a petition for Inter Partes Review (IPR) filed by CommScope Technologies LLC, which challenged the validity of CCI Antenna’s U.S. Patent titled “Asymmetrical Beams for Spectrum Efficiency,” and is one of several CCI Antenna’s patents relating to improving sector capacity and throughput in wireless networks. More specifically, the technology covered by …

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Checkered contractor loses lawsuit after two tower tech deaths

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Based upon substantial evidence to support their findings, a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit has kayoed a wireless contractor’s final attempt to vacate the company’s serious violations of OSHA’s General Duty Clause and $7,000 in fines they received following an accident that killed two of their employees on May 28, 2013. Both men, employees …

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Goodman’s wireless CMs will receive $2 million to settle overtime lawsuit

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Wireless turfing contractor Goodman Networks Inc. has agreed to pay $2 million to former construction managers who claimed the company stiffed them on overtime pay after misclassifying them as exempt employees, according to a settlement statement obtained by Wireless Estimator that was filed in Texas federal court on Sept. 6. The matter was litigated for two years, required numerous depositions …

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FiberLight required to pay $17M to company that brokered Verizon network deals

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A California U.S. District Court judge has awarded Telecom Asset Management (TAM) $17 million in commissions  after a three day bench trial that it said it was due after securing approximately $420 million worth of Verizon contracts for telecom network provider FiberLight. Judge Susan Illston awarded TAM the money after settlement discussions failed last month. TAM claimed that beginning in …

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Wives of murdered tower techs sue the Coast Guard for wrongful death

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

The wives of two Alaskan tower technicians who were gunned down by a co-worker filed a lawsuit against their husbands’ employer, the U.S. Coast Guard, stating that it should have been known that their spouses’ murderer, James Wells, “was a disgruntled and dangerous employee.” The August 5, 2016 complaint by Nicola Belisle and Deborah Hopkins, is seeking over $1 million …

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Court strips the FCC of its power to preempt state laws

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A circuit court of appeals dealt a severe blow to the Federal Communications Commission when it ruled today that the agency could not preempt state laws that restrict the growth of municipal broadband networks. In February 2015, the FCC voted to block laws in North Carolina and Tennessee that prevent municipal broadband providers from expanding outside their service areas. Chairman Tom …

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One ‘tower treasure’ found by a landowner is worth at least a quarter million dollars

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Tower techs frequently talk about ‘tower treasures’ that they find at a cell site left by previous crews, from hand tools to rigging blocks, and a host of other equipment. But it’s rare for a homeowner to discover that someone had built a multi-tenant tower designed for someone else and left it installed on his property, while another property owner benefited …

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Code officer says he was fired for exposing planners plotting to deny cell tower

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Many site acquisition professionals will state that oftentimes, in violation of open government requirements, some planning officials will privately discuss contentious applications for a new cell tower and formulate how they can handle community concerns. Those comments are mostly anecdotal, but a Benton, Maine code enforcement officer said he witnessed three planning board members and a State Senator who resides …

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One Georgia tower down while another planned structure heads to court

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

Tower developer Municipal Communications LLC took Cobb County, Ga. officials to court last week for having an “impossible condition” placed upon it for a new 190-foot monopole, when the county asked it to move the structure 300 feet – while in Screven County,  a tower decided to move hundreds of feet on its own when it collapsed yesterday. Although there …

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Over $13,000 in fatality citations vacated after Virginia’s OSH ignores a filing deadline

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: March 24, 2016 – Summit Tower Construction co-owner Allan Hadfield said today that although he welcomed the dismissal by a Waynesboro, Virginia Judge of six Virginia Occupational Safety and Health (VOSH) citations based upon a judicial filing technicality, following a 2013 fatality, he and his attorneys were prepared to show that his employee’s death was caused by an equipment …

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Employee sets up shell companies to defraud his company with fictitious Georgia cell tower builds

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Execs’ eyes were glued to $700 million in contracts A 57-year-old Anderson, S.C. man stole upwards of $450,000 from his cell site developer employer as well as the hearts and money of women throughout the country through the use of elaborate schemes using fictitious front companies, resumes and statements that he was a former high-ranking military veteran. The District of …

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Tech is asking for $75,000-plus after being struck by an angle adapter

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Update: Feb. 3, 2016 – The angle adapter referenced yesterday in a lawsuit brought by a Virginia Beach, Va. Tower tech that is suing American Tower Corporation after he was struck by it after it allegedly fell from the structure, was a “cable safety boot attached to an angle adapter with bolt that wasn’t attached to [the] tower properly,” according to …

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SBA seeks at least $1 million from two contractors after towers collapse

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Boca Raton, Fla.-based SBA Telecommunications LLC and SBA Towers have filed a property damage lawsuit against S&S Communication Specialists Inc. of Oklahoma, and FDH Engineering, located in North Carolina, following the collapse of two communications towers that resulted in the death of three people. The complaint filed last month, asking for at least $1 million, states that both companies were …

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Bankrupt PCS carrier says FCC illegally re-auctioned its licenses

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

Bankrupt Alpine PCS, a successful bidder in two California spectrum deals in a 1996 Federal Communications C-Block auction, has filed a $21 million lawsuit in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, against the FCC that alleges the agency breached a written and oral contract when it found the Michigan-based carrier in default of payment for its licenses and re-auctioned them. …

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Harbinger’s LightSquared loses appeal after $1.9 billion lawsuit is tossed

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

The Second Circuit in New York on Monday upheld a decision by the Manhattan federal court in February dismissing Harbinger Capital Partners LLC’s $1.9 billion suit claiming three GPS makers hid market information and drove its startup LightSquared Inc. into bankruptcy. The court said it found a lack of a relationship between the companies, Garmin, Trimble and Deere and the …

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Removing five diagonals and loosening 12 others cited for causing deaths, injuries

In Featured News, Incident Report News, Safety, Standards by Wireless Estimator

Four lawsuits that were filed in June against a tower owner and the contractor it hired to design and manage a structural reinforcement project in West Va. where two tower technicians died and two were injured after a tower collapsed, have worked their way from circuit court to federal court, and the defendants are alleging that it was the tower …