Kent Adjourns Smokey Hollow Cellphone Tower Hearing ‘til March

The residents of Smokey Hollow Court have upped their interest in whether a proposed cellphone tower should be built within a few hundred feet of their home.

At the Feb. 26 public hearing on the proposed cellphone tower to be built in the Town of Kent Highway yard on Smokey Hollow Court, the opposition had a lawyer there to represent their interests.

Andrew Campanelli, a Merrick lawyer who has represented clients opposed to cellphone towers across the country, is now representing 11 homeowners on Smokey Hollow Court, who are concerned that the proposed location of the cellphone tower would put them at risk in both a health and financial state.

“I think this is the most irresponsible attempt of placement that I have seen in all the years I have been doing this, Campanelli said.

The strongest objection Campanelli made was in reference to whether the town had to adhere to its own zoning rules.

“It does not meet your setback requirement. It does not meet your land size requirement. It needs to have a 2 acre parcel and it is only a 1.11 acre lot,” said Campanelli. “It does not even meet your height restriction. It does not meet any of it.”

Homeland Towers, the company that would actually be installing the towers, is waiting on reports submitted to the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), that need to be given to the town, which is the lead agency for approving the project.

“There is no question in my mind that before DEP grants a variance, which [Homeland Towers] will need, it is going to have to establish to the DEP that [the tower] would not disrupt the water in the reservoir that helps 8 million residents,” he said.

Robert Gaudioso, the attorney from Snyder & Snyder LLP who is representing Homeland Towers, assured the town board members that while the company is waiting on a response from DEP on reports that they were sent, that the decision is the town board’s in the end.

“DEP agreed and consented to [the Kent Town Board] being lead agency.

Town officials have been working on a plan to bring the cellphone towers to Kent for the past four years.

The town will receive $2000 a month in rent from each cellphone company that puts an antenna on the tower. The town is hoping to generate $50,000 in new revenue from the endeavor.

The cellphone towers that are going to be built on the town campus and the town landfill site where approved on Jan. 29.

The next public hearing for the proposed cellphone tower on Smokey Hollow Court will be on Mark 19.