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Hunter officials have concerns about new relay tower

Mar 26, 2021 2:30 pm

Sarah Trafton is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media Hunter town officials are raising concerns about Greene County's proposal to build a new radio communications tower next to town hall and the lack of community input. In November, the county Legislature approved a 120-foot radio tower to be erected about 500 feet off Route 23A. Officials lamented this week that the project was not submitted to the town planning board. “Our concerns are purely that we’d like to have the tower presented to the public, similarly to what we do with most building projects with that type of impact so the public is aware and able to make comments,” said town board member David Kukle. “The tower is going to make a lasting impact on what the environment looks like and the scenery.” Town board member Sean Mahoney agreed. “As presented, I’m not in support of it,” he said. “In particular, one of my main issues is that we are not getting any community input...." The county put the project out to bid in March. Kukle said he was under the impression the proposal would be submitted to the town planning board in a gesture of good faith. Mahoney said he was unsure why the tower was necessary. “We weren’t really given a great scientific explanation of why this tower is needed,” he said. Greene County Emergency Manager Specialist Daniel King said the Hunter relay tower is necessary in order to make the Twilight Park tower fully functional. “[The Twilight Park tower] is critical because it covers North and South Lake, Kaaterskill Falls and Horseshoe Bend,” King said. “None of the other radio towers provide coverage in that area.” Kukle also expressed concern about more towers being needed in the future. “We still need to build out more sites, not necessarily towers,” King said. “The idea is to build a complete ring from one tower to another, ...so that if something happens at any one location, radio traffic goes the other way and we don’t have any critical failures.” King said specific locations for radio communication points are a work in progress. Read more at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.