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West Covina, CA, Developments

Residents in West Covina, California, are opposing a proposed Clearwire tower at a neighborhood church next to a Montessori school and their homes. 

Developments re: Clearwire tower

CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 10-10
CATEGORICAL EXEMPTION
APPLICANT: Mike Blackwell for Clearwire
LOCATION: 1030 East Merced Avenue (Bethel Christian Fellowship)
REQUEST: The applicant is requesting the approval of a conditional use permit
to allow the installation of an unmanned wireless telecommunications facility.
Three panel antennas and three parabolic antennas are proposed inside a monocross.


Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2010:
Hurray to residents, who showed up en masse and made their opposition very clear to Planning Commission at this and its earlier (Oct. 12) meeting, and presenting their reasons to deny.  Residents, school parents, and the church's pastor all oppose the project.  The Planning Commission ultimately voted to deny proposed cell tower.  West Covina City Attorney mentions that the applicant has right to appeal in 10 days.  If so, the appeal will go to City Council. 
See Oct. 26 Planning Commission, Agenda: Public Hearing, Item 1: http://www.westcovina.org/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID=10526
Minutes will later be posted here: http://www.westcovina.org/cityhall/meetings/planning/minutes_archive/2010_minutes_archive/default.asp


Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2010:
Residents show up to provide Comments about their opposition to the proposed project.  Due to resident concerns, the Planning Commission motions to rescind the permit, and will vote on this Oct. 26th when it has all the documents present to make its final decision.
See Oct. 12 Planning Commission Agenda: Public Hearing, Page 2, Items 1 & 2: http://www.westcovina.org/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID=10431.
Minutes will later be posted here: http://www.westcovina.org/cityhall/meetings/planning/minutes_archive/2010_minutes_archive/default.asp

September 21, 2010:
City Council Meeting on proposed project.  Residents present opposition.  City Council motions to refer the item back to the Planning Commission due to new information being presented by neighboring residents that was not available at the time of Planning Commission review.
See City Council Agenda, Item E-1, page 5, and read/view the various documents associated with this Item: http://www.westcovina.org/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID=10358
Minutes will later be posted here: http://www.westcovina.org/cityhall/meetings/council/minutes_archive/2010_minutes_archive/default.asp


Related Developments - Mayor and City Council update
West Covina's wireless regulations to allow wireless facilities every 1/4 mile


Tue, Oct. 19, 2010:
City Council Meeting considers Resolution to approve amendment to updated the current Municipal Code pertaining to wireless facilities -- last updated in 1997.  See Agenda, Item E-2, page 6, "Public Hearing, Code Amendment No. 09-04, Wireless Telecommunication Facilities" along with various attachments and documents: http://www.westcovina.org/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID=10513

In particular, click E-2: "Oct. 19, 2010 Memo from Acting Planning Director Jeff Anderson to City Manager Andrew G. Pasmant and City Council": http://www.westcovina.org/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID=10505

Among its recommended changes -- read in particular, Item 9:

2.      Location of wireless facilities on City-owned sites

Inclusion of a development standard that requires City-owned properties to be considered before privately owned properties.

3.      Minimum 100-foot separation between wireless facilities and single- or multi-family residences

Clarification of a development standard that specifies that 100-foot separation is measured from the wireless facility to the property line of the residentially zoned property.Page, 2, Item 9 (italics is ours) -- its recommended update reads:

9.      Separation between wireless facilities

Removes the minimum one-half mile separation between freestanding wireless facilities and replaces it with a minimum one-quarter mile separation between freestanding wireless facilities.

As for the history and background behind these proposed changes, read E-2, Page 3:

PLANNING COMMISSION DISCUSSION AND RECOMMENDATION:
The Planning Commission initiated the code amendment on October 13, 2009. A study session was held on February 23, 2010 to review suggested changes to sections of the City’s ordinance. A second study session was held on April 13, 2010 to review issues that needed to be further defined or researched by staff after the initial study session. At its meeting of September 14, 2010, the Planning Commission recommended approval of the code amendment 5-0.

Minutes for the Oct. 19, 2010 City Council Meeting will later be posted here: http://www.westcovina.org/cityhall/meetings/council/minutes_archive/2010_minutes_archive/default.asp


Newspaper articles:

1.  "Wireless company aims to build communication tower on church, school grounds" by Bethania Palma Markus, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Oct. 15, 2010: http://www.sgvtribune.com/news/ci_16350367&t=Wireless%20company%20aims%20to%20build%20communication%20tower%20on%20church,%20school%20grounds%20-%20SGVTribune.com&src=sp


City of West Covina website:
  http://www.westcovina.org
Municipal Code: http://www.westcovina.org/cityhall/municode.asp

For West Covina's Wireless regulations and requirements: see Municipal Code, Chapter 26, Zoning, Article XII. - Special Regulations for Unique Uses - Division 16. - Wireless Telecommunications Facilities: http://library.municode.com/HTML/11504/level4/MUCO_CH26ZO_ARTXIISPREUNUS_DIV16WITEFA.html
 


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