At the June 17 meeting, the Planning Commission approved a second Modus LLC application to install a telecom antenna in a residential area in very close proximity to homes, 20 feet from one bedroom window, next to a cancer survivor’s home. Many people called in to the zoom meeting imploring the commissioners to wait until the public can re-enter the democratic process that we are presently denied. Items 2 (the Modus LLC app) and 3 (Rockaway Beach development) were hotly contested by the public comments as being not “time is of the essence” issues, that should be tabled. The shot clock on the Modus application allowed three more months until September! But despite the public plea, the commission approved it.
I believe the reason for public notification is to give petitioners time to be heard, and commissioners time to find…..not just to “fill a square” to make it legal. One commissioner wanted more information and was denied that by a hasty motion. Even shot clocks, designed to protect the applicant (Modus LLC), allow for several months. The residents only had one week, and a public forum not everyone can access.
I ask City Council to use its discretion to waive the $500 fee for an appeal to the Modus LLC approval on Redwood Way. This is a time of unprecedented hardship. People trying to protect homes, schools and property values are extremely frustrated by being shut out of city council chambers. Waiving the fee would be a good will gesture that might go a small way to mitigating the damage done to people who, health concerns aside, just saw their property value dented by a good 15-25%, when better antenna locations with less damaging effects are certainly attainable.
I hope City Council will please go the way of Petaluma, Santa Barbara, and a growing number of cities pushing back against unfettered technology roll-out that benefits corporations at the expense of residents. As a city we should care about smart development and healthy choices.
Please waive the $500 fee, and if you have the authority, could you ask Planning to observe shot clocks as not just time limits, but time extensions, until the public returns to our City Hall?
Thank you for considering,