Wednesday, July 3, 2013
My sources have informed me that the City Council is considering reversing its decision to reject the proposed Verizon cell tower in Pinole Valley Park.
It seems that Verizon is threatening a lawsuit based on the fact that a contract had been signed by the City Manager, Belinda Espinosa. With the city expending large sums to fight litigation on several different fronts, Verizon’s threat to sue has given the council reason for pause.
The opponents of the cell tower, who had declared victory, are now organizing to prevent the cell tower from being erected in the Valley location.
Sources say Verizon has approached a private citizen to obtain permission for the cell tower, on private property near the park.
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
The City Council meeting last night was chock full of surprises, more about that in a later post, not the least of which was the Council’s NO vote on the Verizon cell tower.
We now know why there were so many closed session meetings about this project. It seems as if the lease agreement with Verizon had been signed by city staff before the City Council had given its approval. That procedural misstep paved the way for the council to reject the ratification of the lease agreement voting it down 4-1 with Councilmember Swearingen the only yes vote.
Those who opposed the tower and were in attendance at last night’s meeting (15 residents waited patiently until late into the evening) were very happy and very grateful for the community’s support and for the council’s decision.
We will wait and see if the cell tower idea is reincarnated at some other location.
Matt Bielby, who spearheaded the opposition has written this “open letter”to the Pinole City Council.
Open Letter to the Pinole City Council:
Thank you for taking the issue of the Verizon cell tower in Pinole Valley Park as seriously as you did. Also, thank you for listening to your constituents and voting this cell tower down. I know it takes a lot of guts to stand up to a large corporation like that and tell them no. It was heartening to see that the system works; that, although so many things in this world are messed up, some things do work. In this case, the little person, the citizen, was able to voice their concern for a poorly planned and executed venture and the city council listened. I know it has changed my opinion of politics in general and has made me inspired to know that one person can make a difference.