CPUC Investigates Allegations of T-Mobile Sites Without Permits

As reported by staff writer Seth Rosenfeld in the San Francisco Chronicle (Aug 30, 2008, Page C-1), the California Public Utiltiies Commission is investigating whether T-Mobile has been constructing cell sites in Northern California without following local building laws.

The article quotes Susan Carothers, a CPUC spokesperson who said, “CPUC staff is looking into allegations concerning T-Mobile cell siting.”

This isn’t the first time the CPUC has investigated wireless carriers for putting up sites sans all required local permits.  In 1993, the Commission levied fines of up to $4,370,000 against other carriers for violating the terms of city building permits.

It appears that Glotel, the London-based international technology staffing and projects company with U.S. headquarters in Chicago, will be a target of the CPUC’s investigation.  Two former employees of Glotel were quoted in the Chronicle article, one of whom said that the activities being investigated by the CPUC “…happened every day” and specifically identified these activities occurring in Marin, San Franicsco, San Matel, and Santa Clara counties.   Brian Lynch, the other Glotel employee quoted in the article, said he was fired when he told Glotel that they were not following the proper process.

Stay tuned…this should be interesting!  Here is a link to the original story at SFGATE.com.



New Port Richey, FL opens government property, buildings to be cell sites

The opening lines of the Tampa Bay Online (The Tampa Tribune) story from February 7, 2008 tell it all:

NEW PORT RICHEY – It began as a discussion between city council members on limiting telecommunications towers within the city, but it ended up doing the exact opposite.

The city council Tuesday night approved the first reading of an ordinance that will permit the installation of cellular phone towers on most local government and public properties.

It passed 4-1.

While this is an interesting step toward wireless deployment, it’s important to realize that not every wireless carrier can make every site work on government owned property.

To read the full story at TPO.com, click here.


Wireless 101 Presentation to the City of Oceanside, California

On January 24, 2008 I had the pleasure of presenting my Wireless 101 lecture to the Planning Commission of the City of Oceanside, California. The lecture covers fundamentals of cell tower siting in a non-technical manner. I also use dozens of high-resolution photographs to illustrate the technology. No, I don’t shy away from dealing with the question of RF safety, and how local governments can review the issue within the boundaries established by Congress and the Federal Communications Commission.

Perhaps the best part of the lecture is a photographic review of “The Good; The Bad; and The Silly” of cell siting.

If you’d like to have me present the Wireless 101 lecture to your government agency meeting, please feel free to contact me.