Neighbors oppose cell tower

Belington Council discussed the concerns of a local couple this week regarding a proposed Verizon cell tower 275 feet from their home.

Richard and Nancy Snider told council they oppose the tower’s construction, which is sought by their neighbor Mark Riggleman.

“Our neighbors have requested permission to erect a cell tower 275 feet from our home,” Nancy Snider said. “We are concerned about the safety, like what would happen if it falls in a storm. We are also concerned about what this will do to our property value.”

Snider said Riggleman has a large amount of property, but chose to put the tower as far away from his own house as possible.

“Where does this stop?” asked Snider. “We will be looking right out our front door at the tower. This would only be 75 feet from our property line.”

Building permit inspector Don Harris said Riggleman re-applied for a building permit to erect the tower on March 13, because the prior permit had expired. Harris said the permit request is for a 190-foot tower with 12 panel antennas. He said there would also be an 11-foot equipment building with the tower.

“The Riggleman property is a ‘B’ Zone and I checked with the regulations,” Harris said. “On page 13, section 12, it states that construction heights are not to exceed 80 feet. This structure is 190 feet, so it must be denied. The petitioners may ask to have the decision sent to the board of zoning appeals.”

Harris also said the regulations state that towers and antennas shall not invade the adjoining property.

Council members voted unanimously to deny the building permit for Riggleman.

In other business, city of Belington Council members took the following actions:

  • Voted to approve a resolution presented by Belington Police Sgt. D.J. Harris. The resolution was in support of the 2nd Amendment.
  • Voted to approve a building permit for Talbott Lumber to install a double wide office.

Christopher Dodds, representing the Belington Library, addressed council asking for annual support for the library.

“You have been good to us,” Dodds said. “Without support the ill effects will fall on the children. Most of the county has computers, but at home, lots of kids do not have computers and they rely on our library. The library is open to them, and without the support, they would have nowhere to go. Thanks again for your past support.”

The next Belington City Council meeting will be 7:30 p.m. April 4 at City Hall.