A hearing prompted by two Keene citizens to revisit the City’s policy on allowing 4G infrastructure was killed in committee Thursday because councilors still believe that there is nothing they can do to prevent the dangerous exposure of wireless radio waves. In a turn around this time, however, the city attorney has suggested that it may be worthwhile to revisit that ordinance.
This debate on allowing wireless towers in our neighborhoods should continue, and I’m glad the city attorney has come around in his thinking.
The bottom line is that the FCC was stacked with pro-business members by President Trump, which made what I believe to be unconstitutional rulings prohibiting local governments from including health related protections in their ordinances.
In 2021 when the city council tabled my proposal to add safety provisions, the city attorney told the council that my proposal could put the city in legal jeopardy. Mayor Hansel, and councilors Remy and Giacomo fell right in line with the minority state commission report and convinced enough moderate councilors to avoid a controversial decision that, in my view, would have protected the health and safety of the citizens of Keene.
Keep in mind that the state commission, appointed by Governor Chris Sununu, included two paid industry lobbyists, who issued the minority report. The great majority of the commission told us that 5G was dangerous. But, the lobbyists came back to Keene and told us that if we passed health related sections in our ordinance, that they would sue us. A slight majority of the council decided that protecting the health and safety of our citizens wasn’t worth the risk of being sued.
It’s good news that Hansel has decided not to run for re-election. Now, it’s time to rid the council of Remy and Giacomo.