University Rallies Around Verizon Tower; Residents Do Not Share School Spirit

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The Town Council is considering a resolution that would oppose the plan for a 130-foot-tall monopole slated for a site on Union County College’s campus, located in neighboring Cranford township, reported Tap Into Westfield.

According to Westfield Mayor Shelley Brindle, “Cranford has not yet passed a resolution formally opposing the cell tower as they were waiting for a response from Verizon’s legal counsel. We are working on our own resolution, which may come to the full council after being reviewed.”

Residents opposing the tower, cite the fact that the planned site is, “embedded in residential neighborhoods.” The concerns have prompted a petition on Change.org, a GoFundMe and a website opposing the tower, reported Tap Into Westfield.

In response to residents and the Cranford Planning Board attorney over the project plan, David Weissmann, a spokesman for Verizon’s East Area said, “Verizon, along with AT&T and T-Mobile, will be filing a joint zoning application for a telecommunications facility in the next 60 days. After a zoning date is provided by the Cranford Zoning Board of Adjustment, all questions and concerns will be answered at the zoning hearing(s).”

Union County College spokeswoman, Jamie Segal, explains why the College Board of Trustees authorized a land lease to Verizon in June 2018, “This is a public safety issue. The benefit is the ability to communicate in an emergency. For the safety of students, employees, visitors and first responders, the college needs reliable cellular service on our Cranford campus.”

Segal added, the agreement grants the college $34,800 in annual rent and half of the co-location fees Verizon collects from other carriers. The college intends to donate the monies earned in the first year of the land lease from Verizon Wireless to fund a scholarship for police officers, firefighters and paramedics, she said.  Comments? Email Us.

April 29, 2019

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