Roslyn Estates cell antenna decision pushed to April

Roslyn Estates cell antenna decision pushed to April
The Village of Roslyn Estates pushed its final decision on the Dish cell antennas to April. (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

The Roslyn Estates Board of Trustees pushed their final decision on the proposed installation of additional cell antennas by Dish Wireless in the town to April 15.

Board members were set to finalize their decision during a meeting March 18, but due to the sudden death of the village clerk and treasurer, Michael Tomicich, and unforeseen additional documents from village residents’ lawyer, the determination will be pushed to the meeting in April.

Roslyn Estates residents have been arguing against the new cellular antennas for months.

Dish Wireless cellphone service is proposing to install wireless communications equipment on top of the building at 1044 Northern Blvd., which already houses cellphone antennas for three other cellphone service providers.

Dish is proposing three sets of two antennas, with two located on the northeast corner of the building and one on the southeast.

Dish Wireless has modified its plans since the initial public hearing in November to address residential complaints, according to Daniel Patrick, the attorney representing Dish. The new plans include moving equipment to make it less visible from the south side of the building, where residential homes are located, Patrick said at a Jan. 22 meeting.

But village residents are still beating back against the proposed antennas.

Mayor Paul Leone Peters opened the record to admit a document from Campanelli & Associates, the law firm representing the neighbors against the antennas.

The letter is dated March 15. Peters said he received the letter Monday at 3 p.m., the same day as the 7:30 p.m. meeting in which members were scheduled to issue a final decision.

The letter is 10 pages long, with an 87-page exhibit list attached.

“The facilities at the site appear to be non-FCC compliant,” said Andrew Campanelli in the letter. “It appears that they are likely exposing, or will expose, persons occupying the building, maintenance personnel, potential first responders from the Roslyn Fire Department and possibly at least one of our clients to illegally excessive levels of RF radiation.”

With the addition of the fourth carrier atop the building, Dish estimates that the radiation emissions from the facility will increase from 58.8% to 59.8%, a 1% increase. This increase is minimal and still within the threshold of safety as determined by the FCC, said Patrick at a Feb. 22 meeting.

Chris Prior, the village attorney, warned board members not to delay the decision too long.

“I just remind the board: We are dealing with federal law that imposes a shot clock on us,” said Prior.

Prior said that Tomicich’s unforseen death was really the only reason the board is delaying a final decision until the next meeting. Otherwise, the board, in theory, would not be reviewing the new document or entering it into the record. Now, the board will be going through the document and allowing Dish to respond.

“[The letter] came today at 3 o’clock on what was known by everyone to be decision day, which, you know, suggests that delay may have been the objective in this,” said Prior.

Rosanna Wolff, a Roslyn Estates resident, said this is not the case. She claimed that the residents’ counsel worked through the weekend on the aforementioned letter and that the timing is coincidental.

“Your willingness to incorporate these insights into the record speaks volumes about your commitment to progress, and it’s something I genuinely appreciate,” Wolff wrote in a letter sent to Peters Tuesday morning.

The next Roslyn Estates board of trustees meeting is set for April 15 at 7:30 p.m.

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