2017-12-14 / Opinion


Time to Dismantle the Cell Tower

To the Editor:

The following is taken from the FCC's 911 Wireless Services Guide:

"The FCC's basic 911 rules require wireless service providers to transmit all 911 calls to a (Public safety Answering Point (PSAP), regardless of whether the caller subscribes to the provider's service or not."

The recent concern that 911 calls would possibly be impacted by the removal of the Rogers High School cell tower is unfounded. 911 cellphone access is routed to the nearest cell tower regardless of the carrier. As such, the existing cell tower at the Newport Fire Department Station 2 on Old Fort Road would pick up any 911 calls otherwise serviced by the RHS tower.

This is just another ploy by the tower cell companies to keep their equipment at the RHS site.

After much deliberation and discussion with neighbors and the cell company lawyers, the Newport School Committee voted for the termination of the cell company leases well over a year before the cell companies were required to remove their equipment. It was only at the last minute the cell companies decided to pull out the scare tactic of threatening that the removal of the Rogers tower equipment would negatively impact the availability of 911 service. This is not accurate.

At a previous Newport School Committee meeting with the cell companies, they stated there were options for new cell tower locations in the vicinity of the RHS tower to include room for another cell provider on the Station 2 tower. It seems that they have also recently expanded their cell coverage footprint with new facilities at St. Augustin's, Ft. Adams and are supposedly looking at options at Emmanuel Church and the Girl Scout Camp on Ruggles Avenue.

The decision has been made. There is no threat to public safety. It is time for the RHS cell tower to be dismantled and removed.

Dean Chase

Declaration to Run

To the Editor:

I have decided to submit my name for the At-Large Council position. Always civic minded, I would like to represent the City in this position, with a fresh outlook and providing support to all the communities of Newport as we move forward with many new opportunities before us.

The innovation hub, new tourism opportunities, education opportunities, growth and development of the North End are salient issues. Furthermore, my support for seniors and affordable housing within our city, rising water levels, clean ocean access, environmental concerns, transparency and open government.

I toss my hat in.

Adrienne Haylor

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