A cellular tower may soon be built in the Mark Twain area of Dayton, according to Lyon County Planning Director Steve Hasson.
Cingular Wireless has requested approval to build a cellular tower at 33 North Rainbow Drive in the Pinenut View Estates subdivision north of Highway 50, on property owned by Vernell Marguerite Denny.
Hasson said he approved the tower on Aug. 30 in accordance with Lyon County's ordinance regarding cellular towers, state law requiring speedy review and the Federal Communications Commission's rules that prohibit local authorities from refusing cell towers.
"We truly need cell tower service along the Highway 50 corridor, if for no other reason, for emergency services, because it's so spotty," he said. "It's good to have that security wherever you are going."
The county ordinance, which passed in June and took effect July 1, allows for an administrative approval rather than a vote of a board in order to be in compliance with federal and state law.
"It's important to remember that in 1996 the federal government passed the Telecommunications Act that saw a need for cell towers as well as a resistance in communities," Hasson said. "The government said cell towers and telecommunications are a matter of national security and the feds took away local control over them."
The planned 82-foot monopole tower will be lighted.
Residents opposed to the tower must appeal to the county manager and the county board of commissioners.
Though counties can't refuse cell towers, they can specify elements of color, design and placement.
The Lyon County ordinance requires that, if the property is residential, the cell tower, if placed on its side, will not go off the lot on either side. It also specifies that cell towers cannot be placed within 1,500 feet of a highway and can't break the silhouette of a ridgeline.
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