Wednesday, April 3, 2013
Council fines VK2UW for illegal antennas
Aerial makes no contacts A PORT Macquarie ham radio operator charged over an antenna he erected in his yard escaped conviction in court on Monday. Chris Wright, 61, elected to go to court rather than pay a $750 fine he was given for erecting the radio apparatus without approval. Port Macquarie-Hastings Council imposed the fine after a neighbour complained about the array of poles and antennas Mr Wright had installed at his Annabella Dr home. Three of the offending poles later were removed, leaving only the main antenna. Mr Wright pleaded guilty in Port Macquarie Local Court to erecting the antennas without a development application. He presented magistrate Thomas Hodgson with a comprehensive written submission outlining his version of events. Mr Hodgson took the submissions into account, along with the circumstances of the offence, the guilty plea, several references and Mr Wright’s medical certificate. He said the matters were “appropriate for the first offender’s provisions” and found the offence was proved without conviction. Mr Wright was ordered to pay $300 in professional costs for council’s solicitor and $76 in court costs. He does not have a criminal record. See your ad here “It was fantastic. You could see that the judge took the time and the care to read what was in front of him. It made me feel a lot easier,” Mr Wright said after the hearing. But he said the prolonged dispute with council never should have gone to court and had “taken its toll out on my health”. “We’re being kicked in the teeth by council not allowing us to do what we want with our hobby,” he said. Mr Wright added that he and his wife Karen, also an amateur radio enthusiast, planned to move out of their home as a direct result of the dispute.Chris Wright ( aka VK2UW ) just escaped a conviction in court for illegal radio antennas.