For reference, here are:
For a detailed discussion on these laws, see the section on LAWS GOVERNING RADIO MONITORING at David Stark, NF2G's site. From his main page, click on the link to his Scanning Pages. From there, you will be able to find his section on Laws Governing Radio Monitoring.
Covering all of the laws around the world which regulate the use of scanning and monitoring is an impossible task at best for one person, alone.
Yet another fellow ham, Richard J. Wells/N2MCA, runs a web page called Strong Signals. Richard has a sub-page there called Scanner Laws which lists the laws in many other countries with regard to the use of scanners.
One word: P.R. 91-36 (a.k.a. FCC 93-410 in the FCC Record).
Regardless of what ANY local- (i.e., city/county) or state-level laws might say about ham transceivers capable of receiving police or related frequencies outside of their normal licensed range - for the ham, those laws do not apply. This, because the Federal Communications Commission actually preempted such laws in an Memorandum, Opinion and Order back in August of 1993. No law has ever been put forth by the FCC prohibiting such transceivers. No user has ever been prosecuted by the federal government for having such a capable transceiver; nor has any manufacturer been prosecuted for MAKING such a device. Finally, it is NOT illegal for anyone to monitor public service frequencies. To make such transceivers illegal under those lower-level laws would effectively render the whole amateur radio hobby illegal since out-of-band monitoring is a capability that most all modern ham transceivers have, and since most hams now own and USE such capable radios almost exclusively. Such laws also tend to encroach upon the regulatory playing field of the FCC. OOB-capable transceivers often are used to aid hams in the course of their public service duties, and this is in line with the goal of the hobby, per Part 97 Rules.
P.R. 91-36 (cited as "FCC 93-410" in the FCC Record) does not in its current form cover SCANNERS owned and used by hams. It ONLY covers out-of-band-capable amateur radio transceivers.
History. On November 14th, 1989, the
American Radio Relay League - concerned about local and state scanner
laws and how they not only tended to unfairly put hams at risk of
arrest, and of equipment confiscation, but where hams were actually
being arrested and their equipment confiscated (in states like New
Jersey) - filed a Motion for Declaratory Ruling Concerning the Possession
of Radio Receivers Capable of Reception of Police or Other Public Safety
Mobile Scanner & RADAR-Detector Laws In The U.S.
c/o Todd L. Sherman/KB4MHH
Gainesville, Alachua Co., Fla.
Last updated: December 21, 2002.
All information Copyright © 1995- by Todd L. Sherman/KB4MHH. All Rights Reserved.