Fight The Cell Tower
Local residents have raised the following arguments:
1. The tower will harm the character of the neighborhood. We enjoy a rural, bucolic setting with preserved farms, woodland areas, hiking trails, historic homes, and pleasant views. A very large steel tower with a decorative windmill on top would ruin the look and safe feeling of our neighborhood.
2. There is no need for the tower. Schooleys Mountain is already adequately served by 9 towers and 47 antennas within a four-mile radius of the proposed location. See www.antennasearch.com.
3. Property values will suffer. Whether the threat of constant radiation is perceived or real, buyers will be less likely to purchase homes near cell towers. With already depressed property values, we cannot allow a project with such a negative impact on our home values. A New York Times article interviewed realtors who determined a cell tower lowers property values by 4 to 10%. (see links page)
4. The motivation is profit based. The Hackettstown-based Centenary College and Sprint will receive the revenues from the tower at the expense of Long Valley residents. It is unclear what benefits will accrue to Long Valley residents.
5. In 2001, Centenary accepted $458,000 of taxpayer money to 'preserve' the Equestrian Center. However a small portion in the center of the property was not preserved. This is the proposed location for the tower. This does not seem match the spirit of NJ Farm Preservation Program, either preserve the entire property or none of it without retaining a tiny plot for construction of a cell tower.
5. There are other areas on Schooleys Mountain which are farther away from residences and heavily wooded to somewhat shield the view of such a large tower if there is a real need for another tower. It is unknown if any alternative sites have been evaluated.
6. Although the cell carriers may argue that the emissions from a cell tower are not dangerous, do you really want your family to be subjected to continuous RF radiation 24x7x365? A number of families in our neighborhood have young children and infants. The jury is still out, some studies say cell tower radiation is safe, other studies contradict that.
7. Centenary College always has the option of building a tower on their Hackettstown campus to generate revenue.