Kudos to Village Trustees Johnson, Marsey, Brady, and President Pope for their common sense vote concerning the Verizon cell tower. I would like to first say that I am definitely not one to encourage cell towers every 10 feet or to not question potential health concerns. However, as the village attorney indicated, the Federal Communication Act is clear on the latitude that municipalities have, which is little to none.
Trustees Milstein, Brock and Baker clearly voted to put this town at risk for a losing legal battle. True, Oak Park has a proud tradition of standing up and fighting the good fight, but come on.
Bob Milstein, tried over and over to find a way to get the village attorney to thumb his nose at U.S. law. Incredibly, Trustee Brock indicated that she had really never noticed cell towers in town before being elected. The legal maneuvering from lawyer and Trustee Geoff Baker about what lawsuits were filed, which Federal Circuit Court these cases were heard and where, did it have relevance here, were unproductive.
The village already has a competent attorney who is well versed in municipal law. If it were possible to legitimately refuse this project he would have given the proper direction.
From the testimony that was given it was clear the volunteer citizen commission (the Zoning Board of Appeals) had done a through job and that Verizon was in compliance. I truly understand the controversy surrounding cell towers, but this location already has two other companies beaming from the same roof top.
All that I am asking is that before you vote please note that you have a clear responsibility to this village. Your decisions and reasoning impact us all. Please do not needlessly open the village up to unnecessary litigation.