Baptist Bible, Verizon to propose new location for cell tower

First Posted: 11/21/2014

At the Clarks Green Borough regular council meeting Nov. 19, Council President David Rinaldi thanked Baptist Bible College and Seminary and Verizon Wireless for their recent decision to propose a new location for a cell tower at BBC after residents petitioned against the original location.

“We’re very thankful for the cooperation so everyone will benefit,” said Rinaldi.

Verizon officially withdrew the application originally filed Sept. 22 before the South Abington Township Zoning Hearing Board to build a cell tower approximately 100 feet from the municipal line between South Abington Township and the Borough of Clarks Green behind the residential Evans Street, located in Clarks Green.

This formal withdraw eliminated the need for the South Abington Township Zoning Hearing Board continuance meeting scheduled for Nov. 20.

According to a letter dated Nov. 18 from Hourigan, Kluger & Quinn, representing Verizon Wireless, to South Abington Township Manager David O’Neill, “On November 17, 2014, Verizon Wireless met with [Clarks Green] Borough officials and residents. At the meeting, Verizon Wireless presented a revised plan proposing a relocation of the facility on the property. The newly proposed location is approximately 1200 feet from that currently pending before the Zoning Hearing Board.”

The structure is now proposed to be erected near the Phelps Student Center at BBC. The letter also said, “Verizon Wireless’ proposed, alternate location was well-received by Borough officials and residents.”

Rinaldi agreed, and said the revised location is a “relief to residents,” and that the move was “very neighborly.”

In other news, Clarks Green Borough council censured council member Maureen Palmer on Nov. 19 for dissuading prospective tenants from leasing space in a commercial building at 276 E. Grove St.

Charles Dennis, D.M.D., the Grove Street property owner, wrote a letter to council calling Palmer’s actions “malicious,” and alleged Palmer said she would use her position as a council member to dissuade tenants, and he was considering taking legal action regarding the matter.

Rinaldi motioned to publicly censure Palmer, and send a letter of apology on behalf of council to Dennis stating council does not condone Palmer’s actions. “We clearly have potential liability,” said Rinaldi.

Palmer responded that, “For the residents of Clarks Green Borough who have elected me into office four times, I answer to them and only them, and I will exercise my freedom of speech.”

She cited neglect, unkempt landscaping, irresponsible past tenants, and the potential for the depreciation of her property, which is adjacent to Dennis’, as reasons for her statements.

“I simply warned them [two prospective tenants] the property was not being taken care of,” she said.

Council members Joe Barrasse and Keith Williams asked Palmer to write a letter of apology to Dennis stating she was not acting on behalf of council.

Palmer said she never led anyone to believe her actions and statements regarding Dennis’ property were made on behalf of council.

John Arcangelo, who previously sat on council for 26 years, told council, “This is a private matter,” that should be dealt with between Palmer and Dennis. “It’s none of council’s business.”

The motion for censure passed 4-3 with council members Lynne Earley, Williams, Barrasse, and Rinaldi voting yes; and Barry Phillips, Alan Hughes, and Palmer voting no.

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