Wyoming Township Plan Commission
Minutes of the meeting Monday, July 10, 2017
Site Visit: Proposed Cell Tower near 6601 Lower Wyoming Road. Flags had been set in along proposed driveway, 25’ radius turn-around and the fenced compound. Driveway to be 12’ wide - easement 30’ along fence in field road position; leased land 100’x100’ to cover possible future expansion (Current plans allow units for 4 companies); fenced compound 50’x50’; extends to 130’ east of current fence; 75’ from pond. PRESENT: Commission members Hamblen, Degen, Lloyd-Jones, Stroud, and Symon Hanson. Also present: Phil Limmex, several neighbors, and the BugTussel team.
Plan Commission members in attendance: Chair Mike Degen, Mary Lloyd-Jones, Lara Stroud, Floyd Hamblen, Lew Lama, and Judy Symon Hanson. Public Present: (Not all those present signed in, and we apologize if attendees are not listed.) For BugTussel: Scott Littell, Andrew Van Sickle, Ken Franzen. Others: Jeanette and Dick Limmex, Tom Kelly, Herb Parren and Denise Marino, Tia Graves Fisher, Derry Graves, Jim and Sandy Doherty, Susan Tikalsky Friedman and Al Friedman, Marty Limmex, Phil Limmex, Jeff Jacobson, Len and Al Olson, John and Wendy Dunagan, John and Cindy Mack, Joe Milanovich, Linda and Daniel Marquardt, Ty and Janelle Fritz, Anita - , lawyer for Jeff Jacobson, Mary Crook, Eric Apelbaum, Gary Voss, Jerry Hanson, Randy Manning
1. Meeting was called to order at 7:05 pm by Chair Degen who welcomed the public.
2. Minutes of the meeting June 6, 2017, were reviewed. Motion to approve by Lloyd-Jones, second by Lama. Carried.
3. Presentation of Proposed Driveway Permit requested by BugTussel and land owners Phil and Cheryl Limmex. At site visit BugTussel team said 1) other higher elevation sites in area would have presented more environmental problems; 2) they are currently co-located on 136 sites in 16 counties – none available for our local service; 3) silos are not sturdy enough to hold units, some not high enough; 4) power will come from current lines on north side of the road; 5) signals pass through gaps in hills, but have difficulty getting through trees.
Chair Degen noted the proposal was tabled at the April meeting to allow for more information gathering and public notification. He commended the company on their efforts in both areas. This is a Driveway Permit application and Wisconsin state statutes limit our authority on the tower itself, but we can work within our ordinances and with the Land Use Plan (LUP) and Comprehensive Plan. Wyoming Town Board will make the decision, but we provide a forum for local voices to be heard.
Scott Littell noted they revised the plan to better meet guidelines and requirements and worked hard to be within the LUP in this unique area. They think this site is best attempt to hide tower given its requirements.
a. Added 25’ radius turn-around
b. Reduced height from 300’ to 250’, eliminated guywires
c. Added detailed erosion plan with post-construction plan
d. Added cattle “gates” as requested by landowner
e. Added topographical data
f. Provided cross-section and elevations for driveway with culverts
From Plan Commission (WTPC) – Driveway ordinance purpose supports the Comprehensive Plan where policy standards include no development on productive Ag soils and no new bisecting of/crossing of such fields unless aligned along natural boundaries. Response: driveway along fence does not cross the field and the compound reduces yield of field by less than 1% (Numbers from landowner)
Issues of public concern:
· Agricultural land/prime soils/Farmland Preservation/wetlands –Response: very small impact on yields; 75’ from pond, not in acreage where wetlands or floodplains exist –see map.
· Timeline for public input at this and future levels of decision –Response: Came to local first to work with town as good neighbor, county is next and then Federal: over 125 required tests.
· Historical significance – FLLW’s Wyoming School (National Historic Landmark), and Historic FLLW Trail end, Federal guidelines include character and use of a site, possible future designation as Historical District – Response: Analysis took in Taliesin and House on the Rock, not school, but it is beyond ¾ mile limit of Federal rules.
· Flashing lights, possible camouflage of tower itself –Response: one light flashes red in day, white at night
· Radius of the visual impact of tower –Response: not calculated
· Safety and tower collapse contingencies –Response: this tower also collapses in, would fall within 125’ not over road
· Coverage area for their service, prices –Response: lower tower reduces area, other valleys are white on map with no coverage, prices are median according to a UW survey
· Local authority usurped (Petition submitted, 58 signatures, to protest statute); interpretations of statute and Preservation authority –Response: Statute allows for more consistent planning by companies.
· Possible other options for siting/co-location/ other company options here –Response: Phil and Marty Limmex told of long struggle to get good internet service through other means for family and business without success and submitted a petition (28 signatures) in favor of tower; company said other landowners not interested; their study shows 200 people will have access, some through roaming at no cost, no other towers close enough for BugTussel, but this tower can accommodate 3 other companies for co-location
· Other community actions, for example, LaCross was successful in preventing a tower
Chair Degen proposed that in light of these concerns we take longer to work together to meet the goals and find a solution more acceptable to all. BugTussel representatives preferred an immediate vote.
Degen moved, second by Symon Hanson, to recommend denial by the Town Board of the proposed driveway permit. The denial being due to concerns raised here on conflicts with the Comprehensive Plan policies and guidelines including, but not limited to, use of prime ag land and historical landmarks affected. Carried unanimously.
4. Revising of Submittal Package. Symon Hanson handed out copies of the current form and the DRAFT copies based on suggested revisions at our June meeting. Members will review them at home and submit suggestions for the next meeting.
5. Pig Roast Saturday, September 9, gather 4:00, eat at 5:00. 1) Tower Hill has been reserved 2) Patrick Michaels will help Keith Symon with the roasting on the old Hoyer farm 3) Degen will order the pig 4) Someone needs to pick up the prepared pig 5) Mailings are ready thanks to Lama 6) Stroud and Symon Hanson will prepare hall 2:30 7) Symon Hanson will get Tablecloths, soda, cups, cooler with ice and bring recycle bin 8) Degen will get beer, wine, and utensils, bring carving equipment 9) Clean-up - all hands.
6. Next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, August 1. Mike will be gone. Judy will gather info if there are requests for the agenda (due July 18), Mary will Chair the meeting.
7. Meeting adjourned 9:25. Moved Symon Hanson, second Lloyd-Jones, carried.
Respectfully submitted, Judy Symon Hanson, Secretary