Photo by Kellen M. Quigley
The former Springville water tower is now used as cell tower for several wireless telecommunications providers in the village. The village board Monday passed a new local law and several resolutions regarding wireless telecommunications in the village.

By Kellen M. Quigley

The village of Springville held its annual reorganizational meeting April 1, which featured several items and the passing of a local law concerning wireless telecommunications in the village.

The board held a public hearing for local law number four for 2019 about cell tower and small cell installation in Springville.

The purpose of the local law helped to establish uniform standards for the siting, design, permitting, maintenance and use of wireless telecommunication facilities in the village of Springville.

“In the law, there is a lot of language for the aesthetic and design of these small towers and their placement in the village,” said Mayor William Krebs.

According to the new law, while the village recognizes the importance of wireless communication facilities in providing high quality communication service to its residents and businesses, the village also recognizes that it has an obligation to protect public safety and to minimize the adverse effects of such facilities.

In the previous law we had just for the large cell towers, Krebs said there was no language that could cover the small wireless towers of today.

He said in the new law, there’s a definition for stealth technology, which is “camouflaging methods applied to wireless communication facilities which render them more visually appealing for which to blend the proposed facility into existing structure.”

Another new piece of the new law reads, “all proposed small wireless facilities shall contain a demonstration that the facility will be sighted so as to minimize visual intrusion as much as possible given the facts and circumstances involved with proposed sight facility and will employ stealth technology.”

Krebs said those are considerations the Planning Board must take into account when they hear applications for placement of the small call antennas.

“Since many of these will probably go down our main streets and in the right of way, I think that’s very important,” he said. “I think that’s the advantage of this law.”

During the meeting proper, the village board first approved the rescinding of Village Code Chapter 200 Section 119-132 Article XVII Telecommunications Facilities. The new local law would replace that chapter in the village code.

Next, the board adopted the local law. Needed to approve the local law was a SEQR and a negative declaration of environmental impact from the SEQR, which was approved at the March 18 meeting.

The board then approved modifying the fee schedule to include wireless telecommunication fees. Administrator Liz Melock said the communication tower and pole location fees remain the same. Newly added were the permit for small cell attachment systems and the pole attachment fees per pole.

“We looked through several other municipality fees,” Melock said when deciding what the fees should be for the new permits.

Additionally, the board authorized the mayor to sign an AT&T lease to attach to the former village water tower, off Carolina Street, which is now used as the cell tower in the village.

The board also approved the amendment to the Per Diem Policy rates in the village handbook for employees that go on trainings.

Also of note, the parking pan in the village has ended, Melock said.

The new recycling totes for village residents are expected to be delivered June 5 and 6 for biweekly recycling.