The two SMUSD cell towers were built without any building permits, inspections or tests.

The two SMUSD cell towers were built without any building permits, inspections or tests.
Cell tower fires cannot be fought with water or foam and are left to burn out on its own. Century windstorms have exceeded the wind ratings of the cell towers and the seismic rating of the cell towers are unknown. In 2000 Los Angeles Unified School District banned cell towers on and near school campuses.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

City Council Hearing

WE NEED A LOT OF PEOPLE TO REMOVE THE VERIZON CELL TOWER.

PLEASE ATTEND THE FRIDAY, JULY 25 CITY COUNCIL HEARING AT 8 am

Here is the agenda for the hearing which will decide the fate of the Verizon cell tower at HMS and Valentine.

Scroll down to Pages 20-27:
Agenda Item #5

http://www.ci.san-marino.ca.us/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/07252014-599
City Council Hearing
Friday, July 25
8am
CROWELL PUBLIC LIBRARY (BARTH ROOM)
1890 Huntington Drive

Please attend this meeting. There is an organized effort by some of the neighborhoods to oppose the cell tower near their homes.

Hope to see you there.
XXX

Friday, July 18, 2014

Your help is needed to support the removal and relocation of the 80 foot Verizon cell tower in the SMUSD Maintenance yard

The City Council will hold a meeting on Friday, July 25, 2014 at 8 am to determine the fate of the Verizon cell tower in the SMUSD Maintenance yard (Located between Huntington Middle School and Valentine Elementary).

Verizon will be presenting an alternative sites analysis at this meeting and it is important that you attend the meeting and write a letter to the City Council to express your support of the removal and relocation of the Verizon cell tower. 

There is growing opposition to the top two alternate sites:  Old Mill Road Median and the parking lot near Thurner House in Lacy Park.  If there are only a few people that support the removal and relocation of the Verizon cell tower then there is a strong chance it will be forced to remain in the SMUSD Maintenance yard.

NOTE THE TROUBLING FACTS

LACKS 2 GOVERNMENT APPROVALS:  Verizon built the 80-foot tall cell tower at HMS and Valentine Elementary without any building permits, inspections, tests or building plans on record with the City of San Marino or the Division of State Architects.  DSA Certification is required for all K-12 schools.  Both government permits should have been obtained before the cell tower was built in 2006.

VERIZON COULD NOT FIND ANY OF ITS INSPECTION DOCUMENTS:  Since these documents were missing Verizon was required by the City to rebuild the cell tower.  Was this cell tower ever inspected? 

VERIZON’S LEASE CONTRACT AND LACK OF COMPLIANCE:  Verizon signed a lease contract with SMUSD, saying they would obtain all Federal, State or Local permits and certificates as well as soil boring tests, but chose to do nothing.

STEALTH BUILD:  The tower was unlawfully and surreptitiously built during the winter break in 2006.

NO PUBLIC INPUT OR PARTICIPATION:  By not applying for a CUP, Verizon avoided notifying the residents of homes within 300 feet of the SMUSD property line.  They blocked public participation and input into the siting of the cell tower. 

VISUAL BLIGHT AND DECREASED PROPERTY VALUE:  Initially the cell tower monopole was a faux mono-palm with only one antenna array.  In less than a year it became a faux mono-pine that could accommodate 4 antenna arrays.  This change required a Modification of Conditional Use Permit and again violated the City building code.  Verizon has a history at this site of evading code compliance.

TROUBLING SAFETY ISSUES

VERITICAL REAL ESTATE AT SMUSD:  Verizon has sub-leased space on this tower to other wireless companies in the past.  Any additional antennae, satellite dishes and equipment loaded onto tall cell towers, can pose serious safety risks due to: fire, metal fatigue from excessive load, stress from Century winds and falling faux branches.

CENTURY WINDS:  In 2011 there were winds that reached over a 100 mph.  The wind rating for this cell tower is only 75 mph.  Current International Building Codes now have a wind rating for cell towers in Los Angeles County at 85 mph. http://www.wirelessestimator.com/countywind_g.cfm

PROXIMITY TO EARTHQUAKE ZONE:  Verizon built the tower within ¼ mile of the Alquist-Priolo Earthquake Zone.  http://seismic.apps.cironline.org/school/san-marino/huntington-middle/

FALL ZONE NOT SAFE FOR OUR KIDS –NOT LEAST INTRUSIVE SITE:  The tower’s fall zone has student classrooms, walkways, and playgrounds in its path.  With 2 large combined school campuses to choose a cell site location, why did Verizon have to squeeze in the cell tower so close to classrooms and children?

THE EVACUATION PLANS FOR BOTH SCHOOLS ARE UNDER THE FALL ZONE OF THE 80' CELL TOWER: Valentine Elementary has 6 classrooms evacuating under the cell tower. HMS has 11 classrooms and a Cafeteria full of children evacuating under the cell tower.

THE NEAREST CLASSROOM IS ONLY 18 FEET AWAY FROM THE BASE OF THE CELL TOWER:  Verizon did not even bother adding a chain link fence.  They merely used the back wall of the classroom to complete the fence enclosure.

NO WAY TO FIGHT A FIRE:  Electrical fires on cell towers are not uncommon.  Tower fires cannot be extinguished with water or foam and are left to burn out on their own.

THE BACK UP GENERATOR’S (BUG) EXHAUST MANIFOLD IS ONLY A FEW FEET AWAY FROM THE AIR INTAKE OF A CLASSROOM’S AIR CONDITIONER.   The BUG has to be routinely started up in order to keep the engine primed. 

CONCLUSION: Verizon has a legal right to fill its coverage gap and needs to find a site that is the least intrusive means of filling that gap.  The cell tower is a safety hazard because of its close proximity to students and classrooms.  The cell tower should not be allowed to remain in the SMUSD Maintenance yard.

CALL TO ACTION:

This is a critical point in this fight and I ask that you write to the City to the SUPPORT REMOVAL AND RELOCATION OF THE VERIZON CELL TOWER.  It is also very important that we have a large group attend this meeting.  Because of this tower, our school district and community cannot afford to continue losing students and to decrease the overall value of our homes, schools and the quality of life in our city.  Please forward this email to other parents and friends so that large numbers can show up in force at the July 25 City Council meeting.

You can email your public comment letter to the following officials: 

COUNCIL MEMBERS:
Eugene Sun ,
Richard Sun ,
Allan Yung ,
Richard J. Ward ,

Dennis Kneier ,
CC:
John Schaefer ,
Dave Saldana

Sincerely,

Concerned Parents of SMUSD
http://www.removecelltowers.blogspot.com/

Saturday, March 15, 2014

This may be our only chance to move Verizon's 80' cell tower off of SMUSD property completely.  

CALL TO ACTION:  PLEASE ATTEND THE CTAC MEETING ON TUESDAY, MARCH 18,  2014  @ 7:30 PM.  

We heard from Dave Saldana that Verizon will be moving  the cell tower possibly closer to the perimeter of the SMUSD Maintenance Yard. 

Verizon can't find any documentation to prove that the 80 foot cell tower was built according to plans and was inspected during its construction so their solution is to rebuild it so that they can get a CUP from the City.

Now is the time to give input into where the cell tower should go.

NOTE:  This meeting will be held at the Crowell Public Library in the Barth Room.

FOR MORE INFORMATION AND THE AGENDA TO THIS MEETING:

Friday, October 11, 2013

Clarification: 

Cell tower in the maintenance yard is STILL OPERATIONAL by Verizon; only its sub-tenant stopped transmitting since last June. 

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


Please oppose the retroactive Conditional Use Permit being sought by its builder. 

Demand that it be removed and relocated at the builder's expense.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The Verizon Cell Tower Conditional Use Permit hearing is postponed again and the new hearing date has not be set yet. 

Monday, September 23, 2013

Mr. Dave Saldana, Director                                                                                             
September 21, 2013
Planning and Building Commission of the City of San Marino
2200 Huntington Drive
San Marino, CA 91108

RE: Application for Conditional Use Permit #13-12 by Verizon, for the Personal Wireless Facility (Cell Tower)
located at 1645 Sherwood Road, San Marino

Dear Mr. Saldana,

I oppose the siting of 80-foot Verizon wireless cell tower located at 1645 Sherwood Road, San Marino which was built without any building permits from either the City of San Marino or the California Department of the State Architect (DSA).  This cell tower was built without any inspections or tests on record.

How does the public or your and other government agencies know that this structure is safe?
How have you been able to inspect, assess, and approve the tower’s foundation when it is already built?

I vehemently oppose the Verizon cell tower, sited where it is. It is only 18 feet away from the nearest classroom. Classrooms, hallways, and the elementary school playground are in its ‘fall zone’, the circular area encompassed, were it to fall down. 

Verizon did not select the least intrusive site, a legal requirement.  Instead, they decided upon a site with high pupil and teacher density.  The cell tower enclosure is tightly located between two schools, the Huntington Middle School and Valentine Elementary School, which serve approximately 1,200 pupils and their teachers. Were the structure to fall, the chance of injuring children sitting at their desks, the taking human lives is horribly maximized.  On December 1, 2011, a storm with ‘century winds’ of over 100 mph, caused great damage and distress in our city.  On April 8, 2013 wind gusts reached over 80 mph. Verizon’s DSA application states that the 80 foot cell tower is rated safe to withstand up to 70 mph winds. Were a powerful earthquake to suddenly strike and cause a collapse, there would be no warning whatsoever, nor chance to escape. How will you explain to us, the Commission’s granting of this building permit if this ever happened? 
 
How can we know that this cell tower is safe, especially after its having been stressed by ‘century winds’?
What will happen if and when bigger storms occur, or the ‘big one’ (earthquake) strikes?

If there is any doubt at all regarding safety, then there is doubt about the location and safety of this structure.

Additionally, electrical fires on cell towers are not uncommon. Cell tower fires cannot be extinguished with water or foam and are left to take their time, burning out on their own, out of control.

This cell tower located to the rear of Room 33 in Valentine Elementary School.  This classroom alone has more than thirty students, and many more fifth graders come to it for math class as well. This situation is absolutely unacceptable.

As a parent, as a friend of former and current pupils and teachers in these classrooms, and as a citizen of the community of the San Marino, CA, I vehemently oppose the San Marino Planning and Building Commission’s granting of a retro-active Conditional Use Permit (CUP) to Verizon for this cell tower.  I demand a relocation of the tower to away from our school campus.

Sincerely,







CC: San Marino Design Review Committee, San Marino City Mgr. John Schaefer, San Marino Mayor Richard Ward,

San Marino City Council,  SMUSD Superintendent Loren Kleinrock, SMUSD Board Members, Dean Pappas of Goodwin Proctor LLP, SMUSD Cell Tower Advisory Committee, San Marino Tribune