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Mar 02, 2016, 03:56 PM
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Private Club Control Of Access To Fields On Public Land


This is something that has bothered me for some time. I have found that in many public areas across the US an AMA club has been granted exclusive control over RC flight at that place.
To my mind a public area such as a Township or County or State Park was created for the good of the public. For sure these parks have regular government policing and I think that is right given the Nanny State we have created, but I think it all goes wrong when a private club who is answerable really only to themselves or their parent private organization which in this case is the AMA has the ability and sanction of government to say who may or may not use the land.
This is plainly a violation of the civil liberties of all who do not wish to belong to such a private club who also feel they have a citizens right to enjoy public land set aside for them.
I have taken this complaint to some of the news media and to the ACLU but have been totally ignored.
So here is your chance to totally ignore my point too.
BTW, I do belong to the AMA, for now...
If you do respond try to stay on topic, that is..." the violation of civil liberty" and not turn this thread into another anti AMA , pro AMA rant. I think that whatever a private club wants to do is just fine, but I do have a problem with politicians who misuse their power and overstep the fundamental principals on which public lands were created.
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Mar 02, 2016, 04:07 PM
Just here to have fun with RC
Rhea's Avatar
It’s called liability.
If the park was open for anyone to use without some kind of control and a plane caused damage to persons or property the park could be held responsible.
With the AMA charter the property and the controlled use of the property is covered by the AMA insurance.
You should know this if you are a member of the AMA.
Mar 02, 2016, 04:14 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by davovinch
This is something that has bothered me for some time. I have found that in many public areas across the US an AMA club has been granted exclusive control over RC flight at that place.
To my mind a public area such as a Township or County or State Park was created for the good of the public. For sure these parks have regular government policing and I think that is right given the Nanny State we have created, but I think it all goes wrong when a private club who is answerable really only to themselves or their parent private organization which in this case is the AMA has the ability and sanction of government to say who may or may not use the land.
This is plainly a violation of the civil liberties of all who do not wish to belong to such a private club who also feel they have a citizens right to enjoy public land set aside for them.
I have taken this complaint to some of the news media and to the ACLU but have been totally ignored.
So here is your chance to totally ignore my point too.
BTW, I do belong to the AMA, for now...
If you do respond try to stay on topic, that is..." the violation of civil liberty" and not turn this thread into another anti AMA , pro AMA rant. I think that whatever a private club wants to do is just fine, but I do have a problem with politicians who misuse their power and overstep the fundamental principals on which public lands were created.
LOL..You mean like the Federal Bureau of Land Management
Mar 02, 2016, 04:38 PM
Registered User
http://hprc.almostliveradio.net/field/

In my travels I came across Hobby Park in Winston-Salem, NC. The flying field was at the park and the club members told me anyone (even non club members) could fly with AMA membership, unless it was a club specific event.

Sure wish there were more places like this to fly....
Mar 02, 2016, 04:46 PM
Registered User
No difference between that and closing off a public street to allow for a private group to Walk for Whatever.
Mar 02, 2016, 04:48 PM
Registered User
CaptCB's Avatar

Legal liability!


Like was posted above, Legal Liability. IF it was not a AMA Club Field, there would probably be: no field, and, no flying. Just the way things are today, NO municipality, want's to be responsible, for ANYTHING, more than they have to be.
Mar 02, 2016, 04:56 PM
AMA 986339 FCC KB5LAM/4
davidterrell80's Avatar
My club... www.lcaa.org... operates in a county that forbids RC aviation operations in all county parks (although I'm working on that).

For over a decade, the club has leased access to part of a county nature preserve. While the preserve is open to the public on weekends only, the club's lease allows members to fly from 0900 to 30 minutes before sunset, on all but a few designated days... scheduled deer hunts and the like.

As to your discussion, I'm wondering which "civil liberty" you feel is being denied. My understanding is that "civil liberties" concern basic rights and freedoms guaranteed explicitly in the Bill of Rights and the Constitution, or interpreted through the years by courts and lawmakers.... like Freedom of speech; right to privacy, free from unreasonable searches, a fair court trial, to vote, etc.

From my thinking, the county has an interest in allowing maximum use of the space with the least expense (to taxpayers), minimum controversy (to officials), and maximum safety (to citizens). Making an agreement with an AMA-sponsored club may actually make money, provide someone to blame in the event of failure, and might improve the responsible use of the space.

Several times, my club's members have acted as watchmen, notifying authorities or preserve officials of criminal or unsafe conditions. County officials have begun to see the value of having a group of citizens in the preserve, who are willing to have a vested interested in safety and welfare of the preserve and the community it serves.Such an idea may have value influencing your own problems.

David
"Our cause is noble; it is the cause of mankind!" —George Washington
Mar 02, 2016, 05:07 PM
Registered User
In Dallas, a lot of the public parks that were big enough had a RC flying area. Anyone could use them pretty much anytime the park was open.

Later, the local RC clubs got involved. It then became that you could not fly at the public park unless you belonged to the particular club associated with that field.

So, you could not fly in a public park unless you joined a private organization.

People like me found other places to fly, even though one park was right near were I lived.
Mar 02, 2016, 05:20 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssobol
In Dallas, a lot of the public parks that were big enough had a RC flying area. Anyone could use them pretty much anytime the park was open.

Later, the local RC clubs got involved. It then became that you could not fly at the public park unless you belonged to the particular club associated with that field.

So, you could not fly in a public park unless you joined a private organization.

People like me found other places to fly, even though one park was right near were I lived.
That's your right to choose. With the way things are now it might be a good thing that the local RC clubs got involved. Where I live there is no flying allowed in any public parks even where it used to be allowed.
Mar 03, 2016, 02:00 AM
Registered User
I already pay for use of the park though my taxes. I shouldn't also have to pay dues to some club which I don't want to belong to in order to use a public facility.
Mar 03, 2016, 10:09 AM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssobol
I already pay for use of the park though my taxes. I shouldn't also have to pay dues to some club which I don't want to belong to in order to use a public facility.
I agree. Unfortunately lawyers, lawsuits, and huge awards by the courts have jacked the system so bad that the only thing that fiscally responsible .gov's can do is to close down anything that they can to avoid big payouts.
Mar 03, 2016, 10:20 AM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssobol
I already pay for use of the park though my taxes. I shouldn't also have to pay dues to some club which I don't want to belong to in order to use a public facility.
It seems to me that you have full access to the park with the exception of areas leased to others by the park authority. That would include tennis courts, soccer fields, baseball fields and other controlled areas. If the park authority wants to put limits on flying R C airplanes they have that ability and, can enforce those rules.

Regards

Dennis
Mar 03, 2016, 01:37 PM
They call me Spock
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssobol
I already pay for use of the park though my taxes. I shouldn't also have to pay dues to some club which I don't want to belong to in order to use a public facility.
To play devil's advocate, if the park were available to all of the citizens who paid for it - would you be Ok with a citizen setting up a temporary firing range 30 feet away from you while you are flying?

So I do agree that there must be some rules about who can and can't use the public park due to safety issues. I feel that parks should be the responsibility of the community - not the government. Then, those who would benefit from the park could pay for the park. Not everyone is into soccer.
Mar 03, 2016, 01:54 PM
Crash 'em if you got 'em
waytooslow's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssobol
I already pay for use of the park though my taxes. I shouldn't also have to pay dues to some club which I don't want to belong to in order to use a public facility.
We lease the land for our club from the Army Corp of engineers/ the lease, the facilities, electricity, water and general upkeep are not free. it comes from the dues paid by members. but hey - its all a personal choice.

AMA is required, and we let non members fly, why should non members get same benefits of paying members? I laugh when the same guy complains about paying dues, buys a new plane or radio without even a second thought.
Mar 03, 2016, 02:51 PM
Closed Account
Some 25 years ago my club (no longer exists) was in discussion with Fairfax County, Va about finding a new place to fly. I was able to obtain a county report on Recreational Needs Assessment. Had some interesting facts and figures in it. # of public golf courses, # of ball fields and soccer fields. And the number of county residents who participated in all the activities.

The number that really amazed me was the calculated 24,000 residents who "Flew model airplanes". Yet, there were zero county supported flying sites.

And BTW, you know this county as the one near DC who grounded ALL model airplanes when this FAA crap broke.

Oh, and that report? Can't get it anymore. They do the study every few years but it's no longer released to the public.


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