Communications Sites

A typical communication site setup in BLM California

The BLM administers more than 1,500 communications sites on Federal public lands in the eleven Western states and Alaska. Right-of-way grants (ROWs) authorize construction and operation of more than 4,000 facilities -- ranging from radio and television transmitters to cellular and wireless broadband towers -- under regulations (43 CFR 2800) and supporting policies.

Most BLM communications sites are located at geographic elevations and have one or more facilities (towers, antennas, buildings, etc.) owned by private or governmental entities. The local BLM Field Office manages activities at each site under a land use plan and a site-specific management plan.

Proposing Communications Uses on Public Lands 

For new communications site projects, contact the local BLM Field Office to set up a pre-application meeting and discuss your proposed facilities. Bring as much information as possible from the Pre-Application Checklist to the meeting. The Field Office can provide examples of management plans for existing sites.

Regulations 43 CFR 2806.36(a, b, & c) allow a cellular/wireless lessee to sub-lease space to other providers without additional authorization. The local Field Office can also provide information on co-location opportunities in the area you are considering.  

The Field Office will begin processing your application once you have submitted a completed SF-299 Application for Right-of-Way. (See the publication “Obtaining a ROW on Public Lands” for additional information.)

Submit an SF-299 Application Electronically

Rental Fees for Communications Uses 

The BLM has a rental schedule for communications-use ROWs and leases. The schedule is based on the population served (as depicted in the nine strata of the most recent version of the Ranally Metro Area (RMA) Population Ranking) and the type of communications use or uses for which the ROW is granted

All BLM State, district or field offices also have copies of the current schedule available. 

Regulations require holders of communications-use authorizations to submit an Inventory Certification each year by October 15 to calculate rental fees for the upcoming year. 

Submit an Inventory Certification Electronically

For additional billing information: 
BLM Communication Use Billing Team
phone: 877-947-3705 (toll free)

By mail, and to submit an Inventory Certification in hard copy:   

BLM Communication Use Billing Team
OC- 621
Bldg. 50 Denver Federal Center
P.O. Box 25047
Denver, CO 80225-0047