Earlier this month, a dozen residents gathered to determine how to fight Bug Tussel’s towers proposed for their area, reported SWNews. Currently, 13 towers are planned for Richland County and 17 for Vernon County.
The towers won’t house 5G technology, and AT&T will use them for their cell phone equipment plus transmitters to support FirstNet. Citizens aren’t convinced that will be the case, as AT&T expands its next-generation efforts, according to SWNews.
“We need to do something because Bug Tussel is making a fool of us,” resident Richard Hoffer said. “We need to protect our beautiful area and leave it better for the next generation.”
Residents are concerned over potential health and economic hazards associated with the towers. Paige Huber of Citizens for Sane Technology said, “Countries all over the world, such as Denmark, are calling for a moratorium on the roll-out of 5G under that precautionary principle that new technology must be proven safe before it is adopted.”
Residents of nearby towns discussed their experience with Bug Tussel’s towers. Lonnie and Gail Muller addressed the history of the tower that has already been built in the Town of Stark. “We thought we had the tower on Stark Township beat when the county returned the $3,000 permit application fee because our township had a zoning ordinance that prohibits the construction of cell phone towers higher than 200 feet,” Lonnie Muller said. “Then, the next thing we knew, the Munson Tower on Maple Ridge was built, and the town must have given them permission.”
“Bug Tussel’s Chris Henshue was there along with their CEO and their corporate attorney,” Gail Muller, Vernon County Board supervisor told SWNews. “Straight out of the gate, the company was threatening the county with litigation if the permits were not approved.”
Some residents of Whitestown, including Ron Johnson, proposed an alternate location for a Bug Tussel tower planned for construction right across from their homes. “We calculated the cost of the changed location at about $17,000,” Johnson said. “Bug Tussel’s Chris Henshue said he would take this proposal back to the company for evaluation.”
Since then, Johnson has learned the company rejected the alternative location because, at the cost of $20,400, it would be “too expensive.” “What about the $60,000 it is going to cost me in property devaluation,” Johnson asked?
The group plans to reconvene on August 28, to continue the fight against the Bug Tussel towers. In the meantime, they have plans to increase awareness about “potential health risks,” write letters to local newspapers and town and country representatives, open a line of communication with first responders and invite elected officials to their next meeting.
August 19, 2019