UPDATE #3: Council will vote on Tuesday October 30 at 2:00pm.
This rescheduling followed lengthy and tumultuous Council debate on October 23. During that session an important amendment was introduced by Councilmember Tom Hucker to require conditional use for ALL poles regardless of height in ALL single family and duplex residential neighborhoods to require "conditional use" rules with 60 foot setbacks for all poles in all residential neighborhoods. In some cases a OZAH hearing examiner may reduce setbacks. (The Hucker amendment passed by vote of 6-3 with Reimer, Rice and Floreen opposed.)
We are very appreciative of Mr. Hucker's leadership to protect resident rights, as well as the safety and aesthetic character of Montgomery County neighborhoods. We also extend our sincere thanks to Councilmembers Katz, Elrich, Berliner, Navarro and Leventhal for their support of the Hucker amendment.
As we approach the reschedule date it is reported that Council President Hans Reimer is circulating a complicated amendment that would allow any pole over 22-feet tall that is farther than 60 feet from residence to be subject to 'limited use" rules. (The impact of this amendment would mostly - although not exclusively - be in those older neighborhoods with above ground utilities.) Mr. Reimer has not publicly circulated draft of his amendment.
The fate of this bill is very much up in air - and it is unclear whether ZTA 18-11 has enough Council votes to pass.
By state law, current Montgomery County Council must act on all land use matters such as this proposed zoning text amendment no later than October 31, 2018.
Learn more about ZTA 18-11 and find list of Council member email addresses here.
PLEASE CONTACT THE COUNTY COUNCIL TO VOICE YOUR OPPOSITION TO ZTA 18-11
PLEASE SUPPORT YOUR NEIGHBORS AND OPPOSE ZTA 18-11.
If passed, ZTA 18-11 will:
Let us know if you have questions. Our email address is: email@example.com
There is very little time.
We need you to contact Council members now and express your opposition to this bad ordinance!
We sincerely appreciate your support. Please add your name to our mailing list here.
1] The technical zoning term for allowing this type of installation with no community notice is “limited use.”
Updated and revised: October 30, 2018
This massive 57' cell pole installed in 2017 sits just 27' away from a four-story apartment block in Langley Park. It is one of three large cell poles within 900' radius that are placed very near apartments. Current County ordinance requires 60' setbacks from single and duplex residential units, but has just 10' minimum setbacks for cell poles installed on utility poles near apartment buildings.
Last revised: March 6, 2018
Judith Monroy in her front yard Santa Rosa, CA in January, 2018 with new ground-mounted equipment cabinet, radios bolted to utility pole plus antennas on top (not visible in photo.) Read thefull story here.
This 68' wireless facility with antennas on Brickyard Road was NEVER formally approved to be here. Readthe story (see page 15) on how on the County allowed this and four other cellpoles in Potomac to be moved to "adjacent sites" in 2011 without public notice or public input.
Hucker amendment for "conditional use" in all neighborhoods passes - final vote is postponed.
Rescheduled to 2:00pm, Tuesday October 30, 2018
MC4T is fighting for fair, transparent and accurate regulation of cell poles and cell towers to minimize adverse impacts to surrounding land uses, respect the harmony and aesthetic character of our communities, and protect the the safety of all residents.
This cell pole installed in 2011 along Norbeck Road was supposed to be on opposite side of street within the utility distribution lines, but was moved. It is one of three cell poles in Norbeck area north of the ICC that were NEVER formally approved for their current sites.
This is what happens when wireless providers are allowed to install cell poles just 30 feet from residences with NO design requirements to minimize aesthetic impacts. County Council is now considering ZTA 18-11 that make EXACTLY this type of facility legal inside residential neighborhoods in Montgomery County with NO notice prior to installation.
The cell pole at right above was one of three installed in 2016 in North Potomac without first completing required conditional use hearings.
Montgomery County Coalition for the Control of Cell Towers