La Cres­centa off county’s cell tower list

Town coun­cil and su­per­vi­sor side with res­i­dents con­cerned over planned site.

Los Angeles Times - - LOS ANGELES - By Alene Tchekm­e­dyian alene. tchekm­e­dyian @ latimes. com

Of­fi­cials will have to ditch plans to con­struct a cell tower in a La Cres­centa neigh­bor­hood af­ter dozens of neigh­bors voiced op­po­si­tion, cit­ing con­cerns about ra­dio fre­quency emis­sions as well as a lack of public out­reach.

The tower was to be placed at the Cres­centa Val­ley Sher­iff ’s Sta­tion as part of the Los An­ge­les Re­gional In­ter­op­er­a­ble Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Sys­tem, which aims to con­nect f irst re­spon­ders through­out L. A. County dur­ing emer­gen­cies. It was one of more than 80 tow­ers pro­posed through­out the county that would al­low po­lice and fire agen­cies to com­mu­ni­cate when re­spond­ing to an earth­quake, fire or ter­ror­ist at­tack.

On Fri­day, how­ever, a day af­ter the Cres­centa Val­ley Town Coun­cil voted 7 to 1 to op­pose the tower, Los An­ge­les County Su­per­vi­sor Mike Antonovich sent a let­ter re­quest­ing that pro­ject of­fi­cials elim­i­nate the site from their plans and “en­sure that the site is re­turned to its orig­i­nal state if any work had been ini­ti­ated.”

The let­ter noted that al­ter­na­tives have been of­fered for fu­ture con­sid­er­a­tion.

At the meet­ing Thurs­day, res­i­dents and coun­cil mem­bers com­plained about the lack of com­mu­nity out­reach by pro­ject over­seers.

The pro­ject has been in the works since 2009, but res­i­dents said they just heard about it in re­cent months, leav­ing coun­cil mem­bers feel­ing rushed to make a de­ci­sion by the Sept. 30 fund­ing dead­line.

“When you’re in a rush to get some­thing through, gen­er­ally, if it sounds like a good deal, it’s not a good deal,” Coun­cil­man Charles Beatty said. “For those rea­sons, I’m out.”

Pro­ject of­fi­cials said the 45- foot tower, which ini­tially was pro­posed at 70 feet tall, would emit 1,000 times fewer ra­dio emis­sions at ground level than the stan­dard set by the Fed­eral Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Com­mis­sion.

But neigh­bors re­mained con­cerned about the po­ten­tial health ef­fects for those who live nearby. Of the 41 peo­ple who spoke or sub­mit­ted com­ments at Thurs­day’s meet­ing, just one voiced sup­port for the pro­posal.

“Peo­ple around the an­tenna are afraid … and I think that’s your fault,” Coun­cil­man Mike Claessens told the pro­ject rep­re­sen­ta­tives.

La Cres­centa res­i­dent Wendy English said her fam­ily was emo­tion­ally at­tached to their home, which her fa­ther- in- law built.

“It’s our for­ever home,” English said. “I don’t want to spend for­ever un­der the tower, and I don’t want my chil­dren to spend for­ever un­der the tower.”

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