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BWP Smart Meter "Opt-Out" May 20th deadline: Did you get a notice or postcard about Burbank's Smart Meter "opt out" program and "deadline"?  Read our "Burbank Smart Meter Opt-Out" page on our companion blogsite for more info: http://burbankaction.wordpress.com/burbank-opt-out/

May 22, 2012, Tuesday evening: Join your fellow Burbank residents at the City Council public hearing. Oppose the proposed T-Mobile cell tower for Little White Chapel, next to homes and schools in an R-1 zone.  Join your fellow Burbank residents,"Save Burbank Neighborhoods," today to protect our homes, neighborhoods, families, and schools.  Read more below.  Write to our Mayor and City Council to ask them to oppose the proposed project before May 20th: http://saveburbankneighborhoods.com/

Go to our Burbank Action Blogsite Calendar section for upcoming events and meetings, including City Council and CPUC meetings, you can participate in, attend, assist or support:
http://burbankaction.wordpress.com/calendar/

Push your local and state officials for NO-COST ANALOGS!


Please e-mail us at BurbankAction@aol.com if you have any questions.

We are also supporting Glendale ACTION as a source for smart  meter information, so please read about the smart meter concerns and hazards here; you can contact Glendale ACTION directly at glendaleaction@gmail.com

For Smart Meter Action forms and letters you can fill out and send, go here: https://sites.google.com/site/nocelltowerinourneighborhood/home/smart-meter-action-forms

Burbank residents: Take action and sign our Petition now,
"Burbank Residents Oppose Smart Meters": http://burbankaction.wordpress.com/petition/

Go here to bypass this home page and immediately access the "Smart Meter Concerns" section of our website: https://sites.google.com/site/nocelltowerinourneighborhood/home/wireless-smart-meter-concerns

Also check out our companion blog at: http://burbankaction.wordpress.com.

And sign-up on our Facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/pages/No-Cell-Tower-In-Our-Neighborhood/200291996083?ref=ts


Burbank Resident Jerry Day: Say No To "Big Brother" Smart Meters. Click Arrow to Play. Then Click You Tube icon to read sample letter he is talking about.


Don't Buy The Greenwash: Smart Meters Are A Dumb Idea

Breaking News: Burbank and Glendale residents oppose the forced installation of smart meters on their homes by GWP and BWP
.  At the state level, California state regulators are examining smart meter options, and several groups are challenging the whole smart meter rollout, while Burbank Water & Power stalls in assuring those who want to keep their trusty analog meters will be able to.  The new smart meters use wireless communications systems and infrastructure that are making people sick,
doubling and tripling consumer's monthly utility bills, have exploded and caught on fire, and they also invade our privacy and security because they are big brother devices that allow others to know what you doing in your home and when, including what appliances you are using -- the meters also have the capability of allowing utilities to shut off your appliances and power remotely.

During these hard economic times, they are also a dumb misuse of our hard-earned money -- BWP estimates the costs at $60 million!  GWP wants to spend $70 million. Wouldn't your money be better spent on saving and protecting our public safety, social, senior and educational programs and services?


To the left is a photo of what a smart meter looks like (this is a GE smart meter that has been installed by PG&E in northern California communities). It replaces your analog meter that measures your electrical usage.  Instead of monthly readings, the new digital smart meters collect and wirelessly communicate your near real-time personal energy usage data back to the utility. 

And if you thought one smart meter on your home was bad enough, what about three?  BWP and GWP want to install an additional smart meter at your home to read and communicate your water usage throughout the day.  Meanwhile, Southern California Gas (The Gas Company) wants to install an expensive gas smart meter on our homes, too, to collect and communicate our real-time gas usage info throughout the day.
  (Gas and water smart meters look different than the electric one.)  So you will pay in more ways than one when you are smart meter'd.

Have you seen one of these RF radiation emitting smart meter communication devices installed on a light post outside or near your home or child's school (see photo to the right)? 
We found right outside our hillside homes and at the corner of Jefferson Elementary in Burbank! World Health Organization scientists have just classified the type of radiation emitted from smart meters as a Class 2B carcinogen -- on par with lead and DDT!  Would you spray the inside and outside of your home, schools and neighborhood with DDT 24/7 every day of the year?  Smart meters have also been found to emit radiation levels that exceed the FCC's RF public exposure standards. No wonder people are reporting health problems from smart meters (headaches, nausea, heart problems, insomnia and ear ringing).

The Federal Government is not mandating smart meters on our homes, so what right do our utilities have to force these toxic and costly smart meters on us? National consumer groups say smart meters should be voluntary, not mandatory, and that they're a dumb idea because we already have less costly and more efficient ways to reduce our energy usage and costs.  In fact, Helix Water District in San Diego has already nixed their smart meter program because their pilot shows that the benefits did not outweigh the costs.  No wonder conservatives AND liberals oppose mandatory smart meters.   Forty-five local governments in California already oppose smart meters in their communities.  You can, too! 
Dig deep, find the truth, and shed light on misinformation 

Actual quote from U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu about smart meters (see DOE website, http://energy.gov/articles/energy-secretary-chu-announces-five-million-smart-meters-installed-nationwide-part-grid):

"An upgraded electricity grid will give consumers choices and promote energy savings, increase energy efficiency, and foster the growth of renewable energy resources."

So, to our utilities and PUC: What "choice" is there in mandatory installation?

What can you do?  Don't get a smart meter put on your home:

1. Sign our Petition now, "Burbank Residents Oppose Smart Meters": http://burbankaction.wordpress.com/petition/

2.  For a temporary hold: Call Burbank Water and Power at 1-818-238-3700 and press "0" to speak to a Customer Service rep -- tell the rep you don't want a smart meter installed on your home and want to keep your analog meter.  Ask to speak to their Smart Meter Deployment Team.  Once you have the Smart Meter Deployment Team member on the line, ask him or her that you want to be put on the their "Last to install" or "delay installation" or "hold" list, and tell them why. 

This measure is not permanent, it is ONLY a TEMPORARY hold and will only buy you a little time.  So, in an effort to keep your analog meter, make sure to sign the Petition above, and also write and call your utility, Mayor and City Council members, Burbank Leader and Glendale News Press editors, and complain (or demand) that you don't want smart meters and their antennae on your home and community, and you want the right to keep your analog meters at no cost like communities throughout California are advocating. 
Also print out a "No Smart Meter" flyer and put it on your analog meters.

3.  Also print out a No Consent form that Burbank resident Jerry Day recommends. 


4. 
Go to our "Wireless Smart Meter Concerns" page to take these steps: https://sites.google.com/site/nocelltowerinourneighborhood/home/wireless-smart-meter-concerns 

5. Read the related May 17, 201 LAT-Burbank Leader-Glendale News Press story here
: http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-smart-meter-20110517,0,5035866.story

6.  Must-see TV!  Watch the smart meter Town Hall Forum addressing the many intelligent and logical reasons why you should oppose costly and toxic smart meters now.  Click the YouTube arrow (on the right to play).

7.  Visit our blog for some of the latest local updates: http://burbankaction.wordpress.com/ 


Have any questions or want us to e-mail updates on this issue?  E-mail us at: NoCellTowerInOurNeighborhood@gmail.com



=======================================
Related breaking news:
    World Health Organization classifies non-ionizing radiation (from cell phones and other wireless devices and antenna) as a Class 2B carcinogen on par with DDT and lead, and recognizes the increased risk of certain types of brain tumors associated with cell phone exposure.  Read more here:
http://www.microwavenews.com/IARC.RF.Decision.html
    
National Institutes of Health issues its report confirming cell phones affect your brain and nervous system!  Can we say, "We told you so!" Use an earpiece and speakerphone. Above all, don't let a child hold a cell phone next to the brain or wear one. Pregnant moms - reduce usage, and everyone, keep them out of your pockets and off your body.  Read more here: http://www.microwavenews.com/Volkow.html
    Also, CNN dedicates a weekend of reports on cell phone safety and brain cancer awareness.  Neurosurgeon and CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta talks to neurosurgeon Dr. Keith Black of Cedars-Sinai medical center in Los Angeles about cell phone safety and our brain; Dr. Black doesn't hesitate in advising, "There's no way to say a cell phone is safe," http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2011/05/20/gupta-cell-phones-brain-tumors-and-a-wired-earpiece/
    Dr. Gupta also interviews brain cancer survivors Alan Marks, who is leading a growing public call for cell phone safety legislation: http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/category/cell-phones/. 
    Dr. Gupta and Anderson Cooper also review why it's important to keep cell phones away from the ear and out of your pants, and to use a wired headset: http://ac360.blogs.cnn.com/2011/05/21/video-is-your-cell-phone-safe/comment-page-1/?iref=obinsite

Events:
  • May 22, 2012: City Council will have a public hearing on proposed T-Mobile cell tower for Little White Chapel, next to homes and schools in an R-1 zone.  Join and support your fellow Burbank residents,"Save Burbank Neighborhoods," today to protect our homes, neighborhoods, families, and schools.  Urge your Mayor and City council to oppose the proposed cell tower project: http://saveburbankneighborhoods.com/
  • Tuesday, August 30, 2011, 6pm, City Hall Council Chamber: City Council Public hearing on proposed cell tower ordinance update. Proposed ordinance is NOT as strong as neighboring Glendale's ordinance (Glendale's is considered one of the strongest in the state.)  Read the Sunroom Desk story here and here. Attend the meeting to speak up or write and tell your Mayor and City Council members  -- ask them to oppose the proposed change that would allow cell towers on institutional properties in residential areas, and to offer better public hearing and protections regarding wireless facility installations in public rights of way.   Remind them to do good on their pledges made earlier to protect sensitive areas.   
  • Ongoing: Sherman Oaks, CA, District of Los Angeles City, Residents Oppose T-Mobile antenna installation in public right of way without a public hearing: at Albers Street & Bevers. Installations in public rights of way are growing into a major problem for everyone throughout the city.  Join and support their efforts.  Read their website here.  Also visit them on facebook.
  • Calabasas, L.A. County, CA, Wireless Developments: Hurray!  Residents report victory on Oct. 21, 2010, as Planning Commission denies proposed T-Mobile cell tower on Las Virgenes Water District property that is only 50 feet away from homes in an R-1 Zone. On a related note, on Sept. 22, Mayor and City Council want to strengthen their wireless ordinance. They have asked their commissioners to promptly come back with "innovative," "aggressive" and "creative" ideas, read more here on their progress.
  • Oceanside, San Diego County, CA Wireless Developments: Mayor and City Council unanimously approve Amendment 39 on October 20, 2010, to their updated wireless ordinance in order to better protect residential areas.  Read more here on their progress.
  • Dec 14, 2010 Tue, Tustin, Orange County: Planning Commission will hold public hearing re: proposed T-mobile cell tower that would be put in their public park near their elementary and middle schools and homes. Join them and support their efforts, and learn more here.  Also check out their facebook page.
  • Oct 26, 2010, Tue, West Covina, L.A. Co.: Hurray to residents organizing against Clearwire cell tower installations near their homes, including one next to a Montessori school.  Due to their concerns, the Planning Commission motioned to rescind the permit.  Read more here.
  • Hempstead, NY Wireless Developments: Hurray! Town of Hempstead, NY approves on Sept. 21, 2010, tough wireless regulations (tiered approach) requiring cell towers be placed 1,500 feet away from homes, schools, daycare centers and place of worship.  Read more here
  • Sep 2, 2010, So. Cal. Region: Dr. Magda Havas and Libby Kelley, leading international EMF health experts, gave a free talk and Q&A session to the public in Woodland Hills, CA.  Watch their presentation on YouTube, and learn why we should all worry, care and take action.
  • Aug 10, 2010, L.A. City: Cheers to residents throughout Los Angeles city calling on City Attorney for wireless regulation reform.  Read more here.
  • Read about other cities taking action here.



This website aims to provide information on the proposed T-Mobile cell tower base station on Burbank Water & Power property at Brace Canyon recreational park in the hillside community of Burbank, CA, including why this proposed project should be denied, and what actions you can take to get our City officials to say "No."  It also includes updates about the revised wireless facility ordinance in progress and what you can do to help shape it (on Aug. 31, 2010, City Council approved requiring a Conditional Use Permit or CUP for all newly proposed wireless facilities near our homes, so make sure you look at any city notification in our mail if you want to express your concerns or oppositions before or during the public hearing -- city officials say they get an average of 2 wireless facility applications per  month, so check the City's website to see if one is being proposed near youThis website also offers information that may be helpful to residents in other communities opposing a proposed cell tower near their homes, schools and parks, and seeking to update their city's wireless regulations.  Read on, and check out the details and "Tools" in the far right column.


Protect Our Neighborhood and Loved Ones

Say “No” to the proposed T-Mobile cell phone antennae in our neighborhoods!

The City of Burbank, CA, last year (August 30, 2011) updated its wireless ordinance and made it stronger than it was before in some areas.  However, does the ordinance that our City Council, Planning Board and Planning Staff crafted really offer more protections to residents?  

Despite residents asking for more protections against wireless facility installations in our Public Rights of Way, the City failed to take action in that area. 

And now we've been informed that T-Mobile is going to re-apply to set up a cell tower project at Brace Canyon Park, near Horace Mann preschool and St. Francis church and school, and surrounded by homes in an R-1 zone.   That's the proposed project that got the whole "let's update the city's outdated wireless ordinance" going in the first place.

In addition, T-Mobile has applied to set up a large wireless facility project at the Little White Chapel in an R-1 zone -- surrounded by homes and near Bret Harte elementary school, and Luther Burbank Middle School.    When the ordinance was being updated, this project was brought up, and we residents told the City Council and Planning Board (and Planning Dept.) how we opposed making any change to our ordinance that would allow such facilities in R-1 zones.

Little White Chapel is located at 17111 Avon Street; see the City's Projects In the Pipeline, "1711 Avon Street, Project Number 090004377," here (see Item 2 under Hearings): http://burbank.granicus.com/GeneratedAgendaViewer.php?view_id=6&clip_id=4399

On Feb. 27, 2012, our City's Planning Board, with the exception of Board Member Vahe Hovanessian, voted to approve that project.   Read the Burbank Leader story about this: http://www.burbankleader.com/news/tn-blr-03030-burbank-board-green-lights-tmobile-cell-tower,0,4157578.story

Residents have appealed that decision to City Council, which will hear the item in May 2012.

How did this affront to residents happen?  As mentioned above, when the city was updating its wireless facility ordinance, T-Mobile and our city's planning staff had proposed the idea of changing our ordinance to allow wireless facilities on "private institutional" (private schools and churches) in R-1 zones.  We residents told the Planning Staff, and the Planning Board and City Council Members not to make this change, because in other communities where cell towers were proposed at churches in R-1 zones, such proposed projects were divisive -- dividing communities, and pitting residents against churches, and residents against the city's planning staff. 

But, despite this resident warning and opposition, our Planning Board Members Doug Drake, Kenneth San Miguel, Undine Petrulis, and Kimberly Jo, and City Council Members Gary Bric, Dave Golonski, Jess Talamantes, and Emily Gabel-Luddy by voice or action did not see any problem with this proposed change, and failed to take any action to remove this proposed change from the ordinance update.

Now, "Fight the Tower: Save Burbank Neighborhoods" has formed -- residents in Burbank organized to protect our homes and schools from cell towers.  Burbank ACTION applauds their efforts!  

Visit their website: http://saveburbankneighborhoods.com/, and contact them to support their efforts.  Donate to their cause if you want to protect your homes, schools, loved ones, family, children, neighborhood, real estate values, and community.  They are also now selling T-shirts and lawn signs.  Order yours today!

They organized a successful March 31, 2012, event, gaining community support and more signatures to their petition. 

They're also asking the School District to take a stand against cell towers.  Read the Burbank Leader story on this development: http://articles.burbankleader.com/2012-04-06/news/tn-blr-0407-schools-may-ban-cell-equipment_1_towers-on-school-property-cell-tower-neighbor-opposition

When you contact them, ask them how you can join their efforts and help them get more signatures, participate at events, and lend your support at the upcoming City Council appeal hearing.

In related news, the City of Calabasas (Oct. 21, 2010) voted unanimously to deny a proposed T-Mobile cell tower on the water district's property next to homes -- so should the City of Burbank! (Residents there did an awesome job telling officials why to deny.) 

Residents in Oceanside, CA, did a great job of pushing for updated regulations with their City officials

The City of Hempstead, NY, also recently approved regulations aimed at keeping cell towers 1,500 feet from homes, schools, daycare centers and places of worship.  So should Burbank!

Here's a recap of previous news:

  • Tuesday, August 30, 2011, 6pm, Burbank City Hall Council Chamber: City Council had a Public hearing on proposed cell tower ordinance update. Proposed ordinance is NOT as strong as neighboring Glendale's ordinance (Glendale's is considered one of the strongest in the state.)  Read the Sunroom Desk story here and here.   Residents opposed the proposed change that would allow cell towers on institutional properties in residential areas, and and asked for better public hearing and protections regarding wireless facility installations in public rights of way.   Many of our elected City Council Members and appointed Planning Board Members reversed course and did not follow-through on their pledges made earlier to residents and the public to protect sensitive areas.  The two city officials, to their credit, who were responding to resident concerns and request were Council Member Dr. David Gordon, and Planning Board Member Vahe Hovanessian.  Read the Burbank Leader story about this by reporter Maria Hsin, "Council OKs new cell tower rules," Sept. 6, 2011: http://www.burbankleader.com/news/tn-blr-0907-wireless,0,6526072.story
  • On Dec. 8, 2009, our city officials initiated updating its ordinance at their first Joint Study Session on Wireless Facilities.  At their second Joint Study Session on June 14, 2010, they asked staff to present interim (temporary) revisions because the revised comprehensive ordinance would not be ready for  review and approval until later in the year. On July 26, 2010, our Planning Board approved the interim revisions, and on Aug. 31, 2010, our City Council approved and adopted them.  As a result, a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) is now required for newly proposed wireless facilities, which means that residents near them must be notified in advance so you can voice your concerns (and opposition) prior and at the public hearing before the Planning Board or City Council.  Wireless applicants must also complete a new application form that requires detailed information on why they want to install the proposed facility near you.   These measures represent good progress, but....
  • Still lacking: Our City still needs regulations specifically addressing installations in public rights of way (PROW, that is, our sidewalks and utility poles near our homes, parks and schools).  For example, L.A. city's outdated wireless regulations have loopholes that allow installation of wireless facilities in PROW without notifying residents and without and a means of appeal before it's approved;  as a result, residents are outraged to find these installed near their homes and schools overnight, without warning, and want reform.  We don't want this to happen here in Burbank.
  • Still ahead: We need our revised comprehensive wireless ordinance to include a tiered-approach protecting sensitive residential and multi-residential zones like Glendale adopted earlier this year.  
  • Still ahead in November: Our City plans to organize a community meeting seeking resident input for its revised ordinance.  That's our time to voice our concerns and recommendations, including strong PROW regulations and a tiered approach like neighboring Glendale has.
  • Still ahead at the end of  2010: Taking our concerns into consideration, the Planning Board and City Council will review and approve the revised comprehensive ordinance. 
  • After that: Our City Council will decide on the fate of the proposed Brace Canyon park cell tower -- and, with your continued urging and communications, they will hopefully do the right thing and deny it!

We Already Have Coverage Part 1 of 2

Further detailed status of proposed Brace Canyon park cell tower project.
When we e-mailed then Burbank Deputy City Planner (now Burbank City Planner) Michael Forbes about this, he promptly updated us (May 17, 2010):


"The City Manager’s office has directed that no new leases for cell facilities on City property be brought forward for City Council consideration until an updated wireless ordinance is brought forward. Therefore, the application for Brace Park is on hold until the wireless ordinance is updated or at least until we have direction from Council on what the new ordinance will entail."

At the July 26th Planning Board meeting, your fellow Burbank residents submitted Resident Report that included a video of a resident cell phone survey we did in and around the Brace Canyon park that illustrated how we already have adequate coverage (click the play arrows, in the YouTube boxes to your right, to view parts 1 and 2). 

Action you can take: Keep your communication going with our Mayor, City Council, BWP, the City Manager, and the Planning Department. Send them more letters and e-mails to let them know we still care about what's going to happen with the proposed Brace Canyon park cell tower project: we still oppose it, and want their support to deny it. (See below for reasons you can suggest to them to deny the proposed cell tower.)

We Already Have Coverage Part 2


What about a cell tower at St. Francis Xavier Church? 
On Dec. 8, 2009, Mr. Forbes informed City Council that a wireless company (we later found out it's T-Mobile) has filed an application with the city, asking the city to change its ordinance so that wireless facilities can be installed on private institutional (private church and school) properties in R-1 zones.  For instance, at St. Francis Xavier school/church right next to Horace Mann Children's Center in our R-1 hillside residential community.  T-Mobile reps in Nov. 2009 told hillside residents that St. Francis Xavier would be an alternative site to the Brace Canyon park location.  This is not a solution or acceptable alternative location. 

Action you can take: Ask St. Francis Xavier's Pastor Richard Albarano and. Dir. of Business Administration Rita Recker to not accept an offer to install a cell tower on their property. 



A new cell tower at University and Bel Aire? There have been reports that wireless industry reps are interested in installing a cell tower at the corner of University Avenue and Bel Aire Drive, another residential neighborhood of Burbank.

Related Breaking News:
Action you can take:
Write to City officials telling them you oppose this idea and why (see below for contact info and possible reasons you can state in your communication).


More problems: Do you want cell towers installed on our utility and telephone poles next to your homes? Burbank currently lacks an ordinance for wireless (cell phone and WiMax) installations in public rights of way (or PROW, that is, on public sidewalks and alleys next to our homes and and utility poles right behind our homes). 

In other cities that lack an ordinance for these types of installations, residents are outraged to suddenly find cell towers installed on telephone poles or utility poles right outside their window or home without being notified, and without a public hearing or means of appeal.  For instance
, these cell towers on poles are now appearing all over Los Angeles neighborhoods because L.A. City Council has failed to update its wireless ordinance despite mounting pleas from its residents.   Would you like this ugly monstrosity  appearing right next to your home; see this photo of cell phone structure in Brentwood along a scenic route section of Sunset Boulevard (installed in a public right of way, without notifying residents): http://sunroomdesk.com/2010/05/19/objections-piling-up-at-la-city-hall-asnew-cell-sites-proliferate-without-notice/ 

In April 2010, Clearwire reps told Burbank's Planning Board members that it was starting deployment in Los Angeles County, and our Board members approved two proposed installations.    Clearwire typically sets up WiMax (Wi-Fi) installations, as many as hundreds in a given a city, and that includes public rights of way.  Clearwire is in the market of selling wireless internet service (for portable computers) and wireless home phone service, and many residents in Portland, OR, and Blaine, MN, are upset to see these installations or hear their "refrigerator box" units next to their homes. (Go to Noise and Nuisance page to read more about Clearwire in these communities.)  Should we ask Clearwire  how many other facilities does it plan to install in Burbank and where?  Do you want one of these noisy units next to your home?

Los Angeles County Regional Planning Department on July 26, 2010 approved a memo stating a Conditional Use Permit and Encroachment Permit are required for wireless installations in public rights of wayThe City of Burbank should adopt the same requirements!

Action you can take: Ask our Mayor, City Council and Planning Department to set up a permitting process that involves a Conditional Use Permit and Encroachment Permit (resident notification, public hearings, an appeal process), a tiered approach and preferred locations for proposed PROW installations, and sufficient setback requirements similar to what Glendale and other cities are now doing to protect their residents. Also ask them to hold off on allowing any of these types of installations in residential neighborhoods until Burbank's updated wireless ordinance is in place. (See below for e-mail addresses of city officials.)

Many thanks to our Parks, Recreation and Community Services Board -- in its Dec. 10, 2009, meeting, they discussed the Brace Canyon proposed cell tower and were not pleased with this idea or the adverse effects it would have on our neighborhood.  Please read the Minutes from the meeting: http://www.ci.burbank.ca.us/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=4941, and scroll down to "Item 2. T-Mobile Wireless Antenna."

Action you can take: Write to our Parks, Recreation and Community Services Board and thank them for their support and encourage them to continue to oppose the proposed Brace Canyon cell tower project, and request rigorous setbacks from our City's park properties.  Please e-mail your thanks and requests to Parks, Recreation and Community Services Director Christopher Daste at cdaste@ci.burbank.ca.us, and ask him to share them with our PRCS Board members: Chairperson Steven Ferguson, Vice-Chairperson Michael G. DePalo, Secretary
Garen V. Yegparian, and Todd A. Layfer, and Whit Prouty.  (The Board meets every second Thursday of each month.)

At the first Study Session on Wireless Facilities (Dec. 8, 2009), City officials showed their concerns for the community by favoring the idea of setting up preferred and non-preferred areas like other cities are doing, protecting its residents as much as it can within the full extent of the law, and involving more community input.   It seemed like such a welcome step in the right direction.  However, they didn't fully live up to their words when they adopted the updated wireless facility ordinance on August 30, 2011, as mentioned above.

  Remember, here's what you can do to help!

====================================================================================================

Write and tell our City Officials:
1) deny the proposed cell tower projects at Little White Chapel and at Brace Canyon
2) protect our homes, schools and parks from cell towers
3) tell them you oppose and they should also oppose the Aug. 30, 2011, change in our ordinance that now allows cell towers at private schools and churches in R-1 residential neighborhoods -- it is a bad change that needs to be removed from our ordinance because it is extremely divisive to our community, alters the residential nature of our neighborhoods, is detrimental to property values, and negatively affects the quality of our life, neighborhood and community
4) all proposed wireless facility installations, including those in public rights of way (PROW) and utility poles and property, should require a Conditional Use Permit and Encroachment Permit (notifying residents and schools, public hearings and a means of appeal)
5) require RF cumulative estimates and a 2-year master plan from applicants
6) make available on the City website a map of all the wireless facilities in the city like other cities are doing
7) require courtesy right-to-know notification of parents of school children when cell towers are proposed within 1,500 feet of our schools
  • Send you e-mail to Burbank Water & Power:
    • Mike Thompson, Principal Civil Engineer: MThompson@ci.burbank.ca.us, AND 
    • Ron Davis, General Manager: RDavis@ci.burbank.ca.us
  • And City Council members, Planning Board, and General Manager, because they're the ones who will approve or deny the Brace Canyon cell tower lease agreement and will be updating our wireless facility ordinance.  Include your name, address and zip code:
    • Mayor and City Council: CityCouncil@ci.burbank.ca.us ("Honorable Mayor and City Council Members...")
    • Planning Board ("Dear Planning Board"): planning@ci.burbank.ca.us
    • City Manager, Mr. Michael Flad: mflad@ci.burbank.ca.us
    • City Clerk Margarita Campos: mcampos@ci.burbank.ca.us
    • cc: City Planner, Mr. Michael Forbes so he is also aware of community concerns: mforbes@ci.bubank.ca.us
    • cc: Parks, Recreation and Community Services Director Christopher Daste: cdaste@ci.burbank.ca.us, and ask him to share your letter with our PRCS Board members.

  • Also ask St. Francis Xavier Church Pastor Richard Albarano and its Director of Business Administration Rita Recker to turn down an offer to install a cell tower there.
    • dickalbarano@earthink.net
    • RRecker@sfxrccburbank.org
  • Very courteously write to Little White Chapel's Pastor Owen Lee: Very nicely ask him to not support T-Mobile's application for a proposed cell tower at their church in an R-1 (residential) zone in Burbank.
    • Go here to submit your e-mail to Pastor Owen Lee: http://www.newlifeburbank.org/contact-us/
    • Also write to City Senior Planner Jesse Brown, and cc: Michael Forbes, and make sure to reference Planning Project No. 090004377, 1711 Avon Street: jhbrown@ci.burbank.ca.us, mforbes@ci.bubank.ca.us
  •  Include reasons (above and also see below) why you oppose and want them to deny the proposed cell tower
  • Make sure you include your full name, street address and zip code.
  • E-mail your friends and family to sign it, too!
==============================================================================================

Protect our hillside homes, park, schools, church and community.  Burbank Water & Power Department is proposing a T-Mobile 35-foot cell tower with 12 antennas on it...the facility would be located at Brace Canyon recreational park...right behind its  baseball field where our children and families play, and near our homes, schools, church and families.

T-Mobile says its other option is St. Francis Xavier Church, right next to Horace Mann school.  In fact, there's a pending application with the city to allow cell towers on private church and school properties.  This is why we need to take action now:

  • The T-Mobile lease would be $1,800 per month.  But what are the real costs and dangers?  Scientific studies report those living near cell towers experience headaches, tremors, dizziness, memory lapses, depression, and increased risk of cancer.  Children, in particular, absorb more cell tower radiation than adults do.  The cell tower would be right behind the baseball field, just 50 feet away from adults and children sitting in the bleachers, and 115 feet away from the nearest home.
  • Outdated federal regulations prevent cities from denying permits based on health adverse health effects alone.  There are other good reasons to say "No", including:
  • Property values: Studies show homes that are located next to or near cell towers decrease in property value. Local and area real estate professionals and appraisers have also confirmed this to be true.  In addition, a proposed cell tower must be disclosed for properties surrounding the proposed location. Would you want to buy a home near a cell tower?  Did you move into your dream home only to have a cell tower built right next to it?  A commercial cell tower that looks like a fake tree is thus bad business -- for residential property owners, real estate businesses, and the City (decreased property tax revenue).
  • Blight: a cell tower disguised to look like a pine tree is unaesthetic and doesn't fit in with the beautiful and scenic character of our neighborhood and park; it will also denigrate cherished views for some of the residents that would live near it
  • Public safety #1: Cell towers have attracted criminals and vandals (copper thefts), and we don't need or want to increase the risk of crime in our neighborhood.  This is why these commercial facilities are best suited away from homes and schools and parks.
  • Public safety #2: Cell towers have also caught on fire during routine maintenance.  In fire country, this is another reason why we don't need a cell tower so close to our homes, schools and parks.
  • Public safety #3: Cell towers could also topple over due to high winds and earthquakes, yet more reasons why they're better suited for commercial/industrial areas.
  • Public safety #4: Cell towers are also accompanied with back-up generators that are powered with batteries composed of hazardous materials, that are again, better suited for a commercial area.
  • Public safety #5:  The California Public Utilities Commission is concerned about them as fire hazards and is currently in the process of proposing new rules and regulations for them, because utility poles overloaded with communications equipment were believed to have contributed to starting the Malibu Fires.
  • In fact, our zoning regulations and city's general plan say that cell towers aren't typically allowed in R-1 residential zones, and the hillside area in particular needs its views and natural environment preserved.  The way T-mobile is trying to get around this is by putting it on public/city (BWP)  property. 
  • We already have good coverage here.  If you have adequate T-Mobile coverage, tell City Council because then it's proof that we don't need T-mobile's antenna in our neighborhood.  We also did our own survey with a T-Mobile phone and were able to make and receive quality calls in and around the proposed cell tower location.
  • Tell City Council they need to have T-Mobile offer several other feasible and available options and locations like other cities now require cell tower applicants to prepare; also ask City Council to find and suggest other feasible and available options and locations to T-Mobile. 
  • Tell City officials that we need a strong ordinance like Glendale just approved, with a tiered approach and addressing cell towers installed on our telephone and utility poles in public rights of way.
  • Residents in other cities have recently gotten together to protest and provide their city officials with legitimate reasons to deny a cell tower from being built in their neighborhood, so we can do this, too! 
On the links to the right, read how a growing number of neighborhoods, organizations and cities are taking the lead and effectively dealing with this recent public, environmental and health nuisance.

If we don't take action now, this tower will also start a precedent and more of them will appear in our neighborhoods, parks and next to schools.  The wireless industry says it wants the FCC to give it more spectrum and needs to install more cell towers and antennas.  In addition, new and emerging internet service providers and wireless technologies like 4G, and WiMax will require yet more towers and antennas.  And then there are future wireless technologies.  T-Mobile says its next generation of cell towers and antennas will be on the lamp posts in front of our homes.  What kind of future are we creating for ourselves and our children? 

You can also say "No" by helping us gather effective community support:

  • Write to City officials listed above.
  • Print out this Home Page as a flyer and forward it onto your neighbors, friends, work colleagues, and family who reside here in Burbank or have children who attend Horace Mann or St. Francis Xavier.
  • Tell your friends to visit our website and take these actions, too.
Horace Mann Children's Center Supervisor Paula Lamar says she doesn't want this proposed cell tower near her school, children and staff.  St. Francis Xavier Church's Business Manager Rita Recker says she would oppose it at her church, too.  Meanwhile, Jefferson High students use the park for football practice, soccer and baseball leagues do , too.

And once it's up, what's to prevent the addition of more antennas?  Just look what happened to the cell tower with 12 antenna on it next to Burbank's Jordan Middle School.  On July 27, 2009, the city approved adding 3 more antenna plus other wireless equipment.   Parents and the school district were not notified about the tower's installation, nor the addition of more wireless equipment.
 
We  need to tell BWP and our City Council that they don't need the $1,800 a month lease money from T-Mobile,  and BWP should not get into the wireless tower business near homes, schools and parks.

They will lose community standing and the public perception of them as a forward, sustainable, green and clean service provider: "We are happy to report that we have one of the most stellar reputations in the  United States for providing safe and reliable services," says their website regarding their relationship with the community.  Supporting wireless towers in our neighborhoods, parks and near schools is not providing us with a safe service.

The Los Angeles School Board in May 2009 passed a resolution declaring it doesn't want wireless antennas in or near its schools for safety and health reasons.  Nations abroad are pulling them out near their schools.  The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, meanwhile, passed a resolution asking for a revision or repeal of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 that prevents local governments from raising health concerns when considering cell tower applications.  So has Glendale City Council, Agoura Hills City Council, Santa Barbara Co. Board of Supervisors, Albany (CA) City Council, Sebastopol (CA) City Council, the City and County of San Francisco, Portland (OR) City Council, Santa Fe (NM) Governing Body, and the Pima (AZ) Co. Board of Supervisors.

Now it's time for BWP and the City of Burbank to do the same -- the right thing, and oppose the proposed cell tower lease at Brace Canon park, in accordance with a revised ordinance that would preserve and protect our cherished residential neighborhoods, schools, parks, property values, and loved ones.


WEBSITE:
www.BurbankACTION.com
(Burbank Against Cell Towers In Our Neighborhood)
or
www.NoCellTowerInOurNeighborhood.com


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