Village of Central Square, NY
Oswego County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Central Square 5-3-1999 by L.L. No. 1-1999. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Zoning — See Ch. 250.
A. 
The purpose of this chapter is to establish guidelines and procedures for the siting of wireless communications towers, antennas and related structures.
B. 
The goals of this chapter are to:
(1) 
Encourage users of towers and antennas to configure them in a way that minimizes the adverse aesthetic impact of the towers and antennas through careful design, siting, landscape screening, and innovative camouflaging techniques;
(2) 
Encourage the joint use of new and existing tower sites as a primary option rather than construction of additional single-use towers;
(3) 
Avoid potential damage to person and property from tower failure through engineering and careful siting of tower and other structures;
(4) 
Minimize the total number of towers throughout the community;
(5) 
Insure the removal of abandoned towers in order to minimize the negative impacts associated therewith; and
(6) 
Insure that the proposed tower will not interfere with existing local telecommunications and in particular, public safety telecommunications.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ACCESSORY STRUCTURE
An accessory building and structure, including base station designed and used to shelter equipment and/or to support PWS. The term "accessory structure" does not include offices, long-term storage of vehicles or other equipment storage, or broadcast studios.
ALTERNATE TOWER STRUCTURE
A mounting structure, other than a tower, that can reasonably serve as a mounting point for an antenna and otherwise meets the requirements of this chapter.
ANTENNA
Any device, other than an exempt antenna, used to radiate into or capture from the air electromagnetic waves carrying any form of communication, including, but not limited to, cellular phone antennas, PCS communications antennas, directional antennas, such as panels and microwave dishes and omnidirectional antennas, such as whip antennas.
BACKHAUL NETWORK
The lines that connect a provider's towers/cell sites to one or more cellular telephone switching offices, and/or long distance providers, or the public switched telephone network.
EXEMPT ANTENNA OR TOWER
An antenna or tower exempted from the requirements of this chapter pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.
HEIGHT
When referring to a tower or other structure, the distance measured from the ground level grade on which the tower or structure is located to the highest point on the tower or structure, including the base pad and any antenna.
PERSONAL WIRELESS SERVICES (PWS)
Commercial mobile services, unlicensed wireless services, and common carrier wireless exchange access services as defined by Section 704 of the Federal Telecommunications Act.
PREMISES
A parcel of land, the boundaries of which are defined by the applicable tax parcel set forth on the tax maps for the Town of Hastings and Village of Central Square.
TOWER
Any ground- or roof-mounted pole, spire, structure or combination thereof taller than 15 feet, other than an exempt tower, that is designed and constructed primarily for the purpose of supporting one or more antennas, including self-supporting lattice towers, guyed towers, or monopole towers. The term includes, but is not limited to, radio and television transmission towers, microwave towers, common-carrier towers, cellular telephone towers, and structures used to support the related equipment.
A. 
The Planning Board shall review and submit to the Village Board of Trustees a recommendation to approve, approve with modifications or disapprove applications for special permits for antennas and/or towers requiring same under this chapter. Special permit applications shall be submitted to and reviewed by the Planning Board pursuant to the criteria of this chapter. The Planning Board may impose conditions and/or restrictions to such permits to accommodate the requirements of this chapter.
B. 
No antenna, tower or accessory structure (except an exempt tower) shall hereafter be used, erected, changed or altered except after obtaining a special use permit in conformity with this chapter. This shall also include review for any collocation.
C. 
The Village Board shall have the authority to impose such reasonable conditions and restrictions as are related to and incidental to the proposed antenna, tower or accessory structure in order to accommodate the requirements of this chapter.
A. 
The Village Board of Trustees may establish and periodically amend by resolution a schedule describing certain types of towers or antennas that shall be exempted from any or all special permit requirements set forth in this chapter.
(1) 
Any schedule of exempt antennas and/or towers established pursuant to this section shall not apply to any antenna or towers referred to in this section until 45 business days, excluding legal holidays, after adoption of such schedule by the Village Board and completion of the notice requirements set forth in the following subsection.
(2) 
Within 10 business days, excluding legal holidays, after adoption of such schedule of exempt antennas and/or towers by the Village Board, such schedule shall:
(a) 
Be posted conspicuously at or near the main entrance to the Village Clerk's office;
(b) 
Be provided to the Village Codes Enforcement Office; and
(c) 
Be published once in the newspaper designated by the Village for such purpose or in a newspaper of general circulation within the Village.
B. 
The following are exempt antennas and towers:
(1) 
Towers. Any tower extending no more than 10 feet above the highest building on the premises designed and used for no more than one of the types of exempt antennas referred to in this subsection.
(2) 
Antennas. Any antennas extending no more than 10 feet above the highest building on the premises designed and used only for noncommercial purposes and only for the reception of the following types of signals that are not retransmitted off of the premises upon which the antenna is located:
(a) 
VHF and UHF broadcast television.
(b) 
Citizens band radio.
(c) 
AM or FM radio.
A. 
Expert assistance. The Planning Board may require the assistance of a qualified professional engineer, electrical engineer and/or other expert to assess the issues and standards relevant to permits sought pursuant to this chapter. The cost for same shall be borne by the applicant pursuant to the procedures set forth in this chapter.
B. 
An applicant for special use permit shall submit a nonrefundable fee, as established from time to time by the Village Board, to reimburse the Village for the reasonable costs of reviewing such application.
C. 
Bond. Prior to issuance of the special permit, the applicant shall cause to be issued to the Village a bond in an amount determined by the Planning Board to cover the estimated costs of removal of the proposed tower and/or antenna. Such bond shall be maintained continuously in effect as a condition of the special permit.
(1) 
The bond shall provide that the surety shall pay to the Village such amount, up to the face value of the bond, as the Village incurs in removing any tower or antenna pursuant to the terms of this chapter.
(2) 
Alternative arrangements employing cash deposits or letters of credit issued by a commercial bank may be employed if found to constitute equivalent security by the Planning Board.
(3) 
The amount of the Bond may be reviewed and modified by the Planning Board, after three years from its last amendment, to reflect changes in the estimated costs of removal of the proposed tower and/or antenna.
In addition to any information required for application for special use permits pursuant to this chapter, applicants for a special use permit hereunder shall submit the following information:
A. 
A scaled site plan clearly indicating the location, type and height of the proposed tower, on-site land uses and zoning, adjacent land uses and zoning (including ones adjacent to other municipalities), adjacent roadways, proposed means of access, setbacks from property lines, elevation drawings of the proposed tower, proposed lighting, names and addresses of adjacent property owners within 550 feet of the property lot lines, the separation distance from other towers described in the inventory of existing sites submitted by the applicant, the type of construction of such existing tower(s) and the owner/operator of such tower(s), if known, and any other structures, topography, parking or other information deemed by the Village Board to be necessary to assess compliance with this chapter.
B. 
Legal description of the subject property, including the leased parcel (if applicable) and a property survey prepared by a licensed land surveyor.
C. 
A landscape plan showing specific landscape materials.
D. 
Method of fencing, finished color and, if applicable, the method of camouflage and illumination.
E. 
A notarized statement by the applicant as to whether construction of the tower will accommodate collocation of additional antennas for future users.
F. 
Identification of the entities providing the backhaul network for the tower(s) described in the application and other PWS sites owned or operated by the applicant in the Village.
G. 
A description of the suitability of the use of existing towers, other structures or alternative technology not requiring the use of towers or structures to provide the services to be furnished through the use of the proposed new tower.
H. 
A description of the feasible location(s) of future towers or antennas within the Village based upon existing physical, engineering, technological or geographical limitations in the event the proposed tower is erected.
I. 
The applicant's maintenance and inspection schedule.
J. 
A safety analysis and certification by a licensed professional engineer that the proposed facility will be in compliance with all applicable FAA and FCC laws and regulations.
K. 
Proof of the property owner's consent, if the applicant is not the owner of the property on which the applicant seeks to locate the proposed tower or antenna.
L. 
Long environmental assessment form, including a visual environmental assessment form.
M. 
Identification of the effects, if any, such PWS facility will have on other existing communications facilities in the area.
N. 
Other details as may be requested by the Village Board to show compliance with these regulations.
In addition to the criteria and standards set forth in this chapter, the Planning Board shall consider the following and forward its recommendations to the Village Board. These recommendations shall be used in determining whether or not a special permit shall be issued.
A. 
General.
(1) 
Height of the proposed tower;
(2) 
Proximity of the tower to residential structures and residential district boundaries;
(3) 
Nature of uses on adjacent and nearby properties;
(4) 
Surrounding topography;
(5) 
Surrounding tree coverage and foliage;
(6) 
Design of the tower, with particular reference to design characteristics that have the effect of reducing or eliminating visual obtrusiveness; and
(7) 
Proposed ingress and egress.
B. 
Availability of suitable existing or approved towers or alternate tower structures.
C. 
Compliance with all other requirements of this chapter.
D. 
The Planning Board is authorized to review, evaluate and determine the appropriateness of the location of a telecommunication facility in any approved district, based upon a reasonable evaluation of its impact or effect upon the aesthetic character of the area immediately surrounding the facility site. In the event that the Planning Board determines that the location of the telecommunication facility will irreparably damage the surrounding neighborhood or area, the Board may choose, in its sole discretion, to request that the applicant investigate one or more alternate locations in order to avoid an irreparable damage or effect upon the adjacent area.
Each applicant shall provide to the Codes Enforcement Officer an inventory of its existing or approved towers, antennas, or alternate tower structures that are either within the Village or within two miles of its borders, including specific information about the location, height and design of each tower.
A. 
No new tower or structure shall be permitted unless the applicant demonstrates that no existing or approved tower, alternate tower structure or alternative technology that does not require the use of towers or structures can accommodate the applicant's proposed antenna. Evidence of this may consist of, but is not limited to, any of the following:
(1) 
Existing or approved towers or alternate tower structures are not of sufficient height to meet the applicant's engineering requirements.
(2) 
Existing or approved towers or alternate tower structures do not have sufficient structural strength to support the proposed antenna and related equipment.
(3) 
The proposed antenna would cause electromagnetic interference with the antenna on the existing towers or alternate tower structures, or vice versa.
(4) 
Fees, costs, or contractual provisions required to share an existing tower or alternate tower structure or to adapt an existing tower or alternate tower structure are unreasonable.
(5) 
The applicant demonstrates that there are other limiting factors that render existing towers or alternate tower structures unsuitable.
(6) 
The applicant demonstrates that an alternative technology that does not require the use of towers or alternate tower structures is not reasonably attainable. Costs of alternative technology that exceed new tower or antenna development shall not be presumed to render the technology unsuitable.
B. 
The applicant shall submit information requested by the Planning Board related to the availability of suitable existing or approved towers, alternate tower structures or alternative technology.
C. 
Any special permit for a communications tower issued pursuant to this chapter shall contain the following conditions which shall be binding upon the applicant and its successors in interest:
(1) 
The applicant shall negotiate in good faith for, and allow shared use of, the proposed tower by others for reasonable consideration and upon reasonable conditions.
(2) 
Upon request, the applicant shall timely provide technical information and leasing terms relevant to leasing space for mounting of an approved antenna to the Village or potential shared use tenant.
(3) 
The applicant shall impose no more than a reasonable charge for shared use, based upon generally accepted accounting principles. The charge may include but is not limited to a pro rata share of the cost of site selection, planning, project administration, land costs (including taxes), site design, construction and maintenance financing, return on equity, depreciation, and all of the costs of adapting the tower or equipment to reasonably accommodate a shared user over a reasonable lease term.
(4) 
The applicant shall remove the tower, antennas and associated facilities upon cessation of operations at the site and will provide a similar commitment as part of any lease agreement to the owner of the premises upon which the tower, antennas and associated facilities are located.
D. 
In order to keep neighboring municipalities informed and to facilitate the identification of suitable existing structures in a neighboring municipality, the applicant shall give notice to the Codes Enforcement Officer of all abutting towns. Such notice shall include a copy of the application and any accompanying drawings, the location of the proposed tower, a general description of the project, the height of the tower and its capacity for future shared use. Proof of such notice shall be submitted to the Planning Board with the application.
E. 
Any proposed tower shall be designed, structurally, electrically, and in all other respects, to accommodate both the applicant's antennas and comparable antennas for at least two additional users if the tower is over 100 feet in height or for at least one additional user if the tower is over 60 feet in height. Towers must be designed to allow for future rearrangement of antennas upon the tower and to accept antennas mounted at varying heights.
F. 
The applicant shall submit to the Village Board a letter of intent committing the applicant, and its successors in interest, to negotiate in good faith for shared use of the proposed tower by other PWS providers in the future. The issuance of a permit (assuming the tower is approved according to this chapter) shall commit the new tower owner and its successors in interest to:
(1) 
Respond in a timely comprehensive manner to a request for information from a potential shared-use applicant.
(2) 
Negotiate in good faith concerning future requests for shared use of the new tower by other PWS providers.
A. 
Lot size. For purposes of determining whether the installation of a tower, antenna or alternate tower structure meets applicable requirements, the dimensions of the entire premises shall control even though the improvements may be located on leased parcels within such premises.
B. 
Setback requirements.
(1) 
Towers must be set back from all property lines a distance equal to at least 100% of the height of the tower, except that a tower shall not be located closer than 550 feet to the nearest residential property line.
(2) 
Accessory structures must satisfy the applicable minimum zoning district setback requirements.
(3) 
The Planning Board may reduce the setback requirements imposed by this section for structures other than towers to allow the integration of an antenna into an existing or proposed structure such as a church steeple, light pole, power line or similar structure.
A. 
Towers and antennas shall either maintain a galvanized steel finish or, subject to any applicable standards of the FAA, be painted a neutral color so as to reduce visual obtrusiveness.
B. 
At a tower site, the design of the buildings and related structures shall, to the extent possible, use materials, colors, textures, screening, and landscaping that will blend them into the natural setting and surrounding buildings.
C. 
If an antenna is installed on a structure other than a tower, the antenna and supporting electrical and mechanical equipment must be of a neutral color that is identical to, or closely compatible with, the color of the supporting structure so as to make the antenna and related equipment as visually unobtrusive as possible.
D. 
Security fencing. Towers and accessory structures shall be enclosed by locked security fencing not less than six feet in height, and the tower shall also be equipped with appropriate anti-climbing devices.
E. 
Traffic access and safety. A gated and locked road turnaround and two parking spaces shall be provided to assure adequate emergency and service access. Maximum use of existing roads, public or private, shall be made.
F. 
Landscaping. The following requirement shall govern the landscaping surrounding towers for which a special permit is required:
(1) 
Towers and accessory structures shall be landscaped with a buffer of plant materials that effectively screens the view of the tower and accessory structures from residential properties. The standard buffer shall consist of a landscaped strip at least eight feet wide outside the perimeter of the towers and accessory structures.
(2) 
Existing tree growth and natural land forms on the site shall be preserved to the maximum extent possible.
A. 
All accessory structures shall be:
(1) 
Located in a rear or side yard;
(2) 
No greater than eight feet in height or 120 square feet of gross floor area;
(3) 
Located a minimum of 15 feet from all lot lines or in accord with applicable setback requirements, whichever is greater; and
(4) 
Screened by an evergreen hedge or other suitable visual screen with the ultimate height of at least eight feet.
B. 
Modification of building size requirements. The requirements for accessory structures set forth in this section may be modified by the Planning Board to encourage collocation.
C. 
Lighting. Towers and structures shall be artificially lighted only to the extent required by the FAA or other applicable law or regulation. To the extent permissible such lighting shall be designed to cause the least disturbance to the surrounding views.
D. 
Signs. No signs shall be allowed on an antenna or tower, except as required by law. The use of any portion of a telecommunications facility for signs or promotional or advertising purposes, including but not limited to company name, phone numbers, banners, streamers, and balloons, is prohibited.
A. 
No permanent platforms or other additions, other than antenna, that increase off-site visibility are permitted.
B. 
The base of the tower shall occupy no more than 500 square feet and the top of the tower shall be no larger than the base.
C. 
All utility connections to the tower shall be installed beneath the ground surface.
D. 
Any proposed structure shall be designed to accommodate the applicant's proposed antennas and comparable antennas for the maximum number of users feasible but in no case for less than one other user.
E. 
Where feasible, structures should be designed to allow for future rearrangement of antennas upon the structure and to accept antennas mounted at varying heights.
A. 
Compliance with other law. All towers and antenna must meet or exceed current standards and regulations of the FAA, the FCC, and any other agency of New York State or the federal government with the authority to regulate towers and antennas.
(1) 
The applicant shall submit evidence of compliance with applicable state, federal or other standards for tower or antenna construction prior to issuance of a certificate of occupancy. Certification to same by a licensed professional engineer shall be deemed sufficient.
(2) 
The operator of every antenna or tower shall submit to the Codes Enforcement Officer copies of all licenses and permits required by other agencies and governments with jurisdiction over the design, construction, location and operation of such antenna or tower and shall maintain such licenses and permits and provide evidence of renewal or extension thereof when granted.
B. 
Construction code and safety standards. All towers and antennas shall be constructed and maintained in compliance with applicable state and federal law and regulations as well as applicable sections of the National Electrical Code as amended from time to time.
(1) 
If a tower fails to comply with such standards and constitutes a danger to persons or property, then, upon notice being provided by the Codes Enforcement Officer to the owner of the premises upon which the tower is situated, the owner of the premises shall bring such tower into compliance with such standards within 60 days from delivery of such notice to the owner.
(2) 
In the event the owner fails to bring such tower into compliance within said 60 days, the Village may cause the removal of the tower or antenna at the expense of the owner of the premises.
C. 
Tower inspections. All PWS facilities shall be maintained in good order and repair. Towers shall be inspected annually on behalf of the tower owner by a licensed professional engineer for structural integrity and continued compliance with these regulations. A copy of such inspection report, including findings and conclusions, shall be submitted to the Village Clerk no later than December 31 of each calendar year.
D. 
Compliance with other law. The operator of every PWS antenna shall submit to the Village Clerk copies of all licenses and permits required by other agencies and governments with jurisdiction over the design, construction, location and operation of such antenna and shall maintain such licenses and permits and provide evidence of renewal or extension thereof when granted.
E. 
Assignment of permit. Every special use permit granting approval of an antenna or tower shall state that any assignment or transfer of the permit or any rights thereunder may be made only upon 30 days' notice and with approval of the Village Board, which approval shall not be unreasonably withheld.
F. 
Review. The special use permit shall be subject to review by the Village Board in at least five-year intervals, to determine whether the technology in the provision of PWS has changed such that the necessity for the permit at the time of its approval has been eliminated or modified, and whether the permit should be modified or terminated as a result of any change.
Antennas and towers in existence which do not conform to or comply with this chapter are subject to the following provisions:
A. 
Subject to applicable state or federal laws, rules and regulations, antennas and towers may continue in use for the purpose now used and as now existing but may not be replaced or altered without complying in all respects with this chapter.
B. 
If such antennas or towers are hereafter damaged or destroyed due to any reason or cause whatsoever, the antenna or tower may be repaired and restored to its former use, location, and physical dimensions without complying with this chapter; provided, however, that if the cost of repairing the tower to the former use, physical dimensions, and location would be 10% or more of the cost of a new tower of like kind and quality, then the tower may not be repaired or restored except in full compliance with this chapter.
A. 
Any antenna or tower that is not operated for a continuous period of 12 months shall be considered abandoned, and the owner of such antenna or tower shall remove the same within 90 days of receipt of notice from the Village notifying the owner of such abandonment. The owner shall restore the site as nearly as practical to its previous condition.
B. 
A copy of the relevant portions of a signed lease which requires the applicant to remove the tower, antennas and associated facilities upon cessation of operations at the site shall be submitted at the time of the application.
C. 
In the event the owner fails to remove an abandoned antenna or tower within said 90 days, the Village may cause the removal of the tower or antenna at the expense of the owner of the premises.