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Board of Supervisors mulling over approving new cell tower

A map in the Williamson Valley community area shows potential locations for a proposed cell tower made to look like a pine tree could go. The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors are scheduled to discuss the proposal at their next meeting at 9 a.m. Wednesday, March 6. (Courier rendoring with Google map)

A map in the Williamson Valley community area shows potential locations for a proposed cell tower made to look like a pine tree could go. The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors are scheduled to discuss the proposal at their next meeting at 9 a.m. Wednesday, March 6. (Courier rendoring with Google map)

A wireless use permit for a proposed cell tower designed to look like a pine tree is on the agenda for the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors meeting, which is scheduled for 9 a.m. Wednesday, March 6.

AT&T is the entity seeking to build the cell tower. The phone company has a FirstNet nationwide project under the Federal Government to provide an improved communication network designed specifically for first responders. This tower is a part of the program.

If built, the cell tower would stand 67 feet tall and designed to blend into the surroundings as a pine tree. It would also have supporting equipment manufactured with it as well.

As proposed, the cell tower could be built on a parcel of land own by the Hunt Family Foundation located on the west side of North Williamson Valley Ranch Road in the Williamson Valley community area.

John Hunt attended the Planning and Zoning meeting on Jan. 3, which discussed the cell tower.

Hunt said, according to a county staff report of the meeting, that a lot of people come into his place of business with AT&T phones and need to borrow a phone because they have no coverage in the area.

He added that they needed the cell tower for public safety and that his family had previously given permission during the Doce fire to have temporary communications on the subject property.

The planning commission voted on a motion for a recommendation of approval of the wireless use permit.

In support of the AT&T cell tower are Susan and Larry Gregg.

“We have many friends and relatives who are with this service carrier and get little to no service in Williamson Valley which is not good and can be dangerous when needing a cell signal,” the Greggs wrote to Supervisor Craig Brown. “In contrast, those of us with Verizon get a very strong signal in most places in the valley. So please consider this opinion when making a final decision.”

Some are opposed to this tower.

“This is an opportunity to place of the needs of the many ahead of the profit desires of a corporation,” Steven and Louise Prout said in a letter to Supervisor Brown. “I request that you add your voice to the objections and disapprove the proposal, even if passed by the County development services.”

It all could come to a head on Wednesday.

Also on the agenda for the Board of Supervisors:

• Review a presentation of $19,000 from the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors to the Arizona Wildfire and Incident Management Academy (AWIMA) for scholarships in memory of the Granite Mountain Hot Shots.

• Accept the resignation of Dan Rusing, Finance Director, and effective June 14, 2019.

• Approve an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) between Yavapai County and the Town of Prescott Valley for Civic Drive Sidewalk Northside Pedestrian Improvements.

• Presentation of 2018 Golden Plate Awards to food establishments in West Yavapai County.

George Johnston is a reporter for The Daily Courier. Follow him on Twitter at @GeorgeSJohnston. Reach him by email at gjohnston@prescottaz.com, or call 928-445-3333, ext. 2038.

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