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Some in Blue Ridge Summit favor tower, but oppose its location

Third public hearing scheduled for June 2

Third public hearing scheduled for June 2

May 16, 2008|By JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, Pa. -- Even with more than six hours of testimony already presented concerning a cell phone tower proposed in Blue Ridge Summit, Pa., an opportunity for additional comment will be offered June 2.

The scope of permissible topics for discussion will be limited that night, which will be the third public hearing about the 190-foot tower planned by Liberty Towers of Rockville, Md.

Several mountaintop residents who spoke during this week's hearing said they were not opposed to a new tower, but said the 15387 Jacobs Church Road location is wrong.

"I'm all for a cell tower ... but this is not the place," said Mary Rae Cantwell of Monterey Lane.

Dick Moebius of Stahley Road, however, was a staunch supporter of erecting the tower, especially with Franklin County's pending changeover to an E-911 system. Blue Ridge Summit's cell phone coverage is spotty at best for providers other than Nextel.

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Moebius shared a fear about his terminally ill wife's phone call not reaching him if he's at the store.

"We have to think of the people that come (for a visit) ... and want to call back to the children on the cell phone and say, 'We made it safely,'" Moebius said.

Moebius claimed to have collected 440 signatures in one day on a support petition drafted by his teenage grandson. The petition specifically referenced the Jacobs Church Road location, which has been criticized for its proximity to heavily traveled Pa. 16.

"I could get a better petition together than he's got," Cantwell said. "I don't have that kind of time."

The cell tower would be a conditional use on the commercially zoned property.

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