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Protesters Plan Rally Against Manorhaven Cell Tower

Rally takes place on March 18; begins at Manorhaven Park

After the Village of Manorhaven announced this past fall that it would allow plans involving a controversial cell tower in Manhasset Isle to resume, residents will protest this weekend and state and town officials have sounded in with letters to the mobile companies behind the project. (These can be read in their entirety in our editorial section.)

In October of 2011, Manorhaven Mayor Michael T. Meehan issued a statement explaining that his village was ordered by a federal court to allow construction of a cell tower to progress on Pequot Avenue. He said in the statement that Manorhaven had issued a “stop work order” in 2009 to AG Towers, Inc. but as a result of the 2011 ruling, that order was being lifted.

Local residents and officials are still voicing alarm over the placement of the tower, on a corner in a residential neighborhood, directly next door to and across the street from homes. In addition to its proximity to the homes, protesters have also complained that the tower is too close to a school, park, church and local businesses. They cite health studies showing that its location puts many children and adults at high risk.

Beyond the health hazard, at least one resident has complained of damage to their property from construction and many fear a negative effect on the value of their home or their ability to occupy rental properties.

State Senator Jack Martins wrote a public letter to T-Mobile and AG Towers, the two companies involved in the project, urging them to seek a different location for the tower.

He said he was “stunned that any responsible telecommunications company would locate a tower so as to infringe on a residential community the way that this tower has so clearly done.”

Town of North Hempstead Councilwoman Dina DeGiorgio also wrote to both companies, offering a 144-signature petition from neighborhood residents. She also discussed the possibility of an alternate site, requesting that the companies “explore the possibility of relocating the cell tower to a different location which will produce less public opposition.”

On Sunday, March 18, protesters will gather at noon at Manorhaven Park Parking Lot and do a walk past Village Hall, ending at the cell tower site on Pequot. They have invited anyone interested in more information to contact fightthecell tower@ gmail.com.