County Approves Further Study on Telecom Tower Site Selection
December 4, 2012
The County Board of Supervisors Tuesday agreed with a vocal group of Pebble Beach neighbors who claim a proposed emergency communications tower could diminish the quality of their views.
With a 5-0 vote and little fanfare, the board overturned the county Planning Commission's approval of the tower site on Huckleberry Hill after Pebble Beach resident Jameson Halpern appealed (pictured above, addressing law enforcement officials at a Pebble Beach community meeting in September).
The board's move doesn't mean they'll withdraw the tower approval, but directs a comprehensive environmental impact review of the project in keeping with California environmental law.
After reviewing the additional analysis, the county could still choose to move forward with the plan.
The tower is one of 18 that would comprise the county's Next Generation emergency communications system, a consolidation from today's 33 telecom sites.
Four of those are new towers, two of which are proposed for residential areas. Some Royal Oaks neighbors filed an appeal, but never paid the appeal fee on the proposed site for North County so their claim was dropped.
The $24 million Next Gen system would allow fire and law enforcement officials in different jurisdictions to radio into each other’s frequencies, and also decrease the bandwidth the county takes up, which it's required to do to comply with Federal Communications Commission requirements.
The FCC has already granted the county a six-month extension on compliance with new bandwidth rules.