P&Z Commission Tables Tower Plan

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The Payson Planning and Zoning Commission tabled a request to endorse a telecommunications tower at the water tank site off Airport Road Monday. The commission may reconsider the issue during its March 26 meeting.

Because the tower site is within the Payson Municipal Airport overlay zone, the matter was tabled to allow the Airport Advisory Board to review the proposal at its March 20 meeting.

The commission also wants Crown Castle International, the company that wants to build the tower, to address several issues. The commission wants the company's assurance, for example, that the tower will not interfere with public safety communications and other communications services.

The proposed tower, which would bring wireless digital communications to the Rim country, "is not within the immediate flight path of aircraft approaching or departing the Payson airport," Public Works Engineer LaRon Garrett said. The adjacent water storage facility is already 60 feet high, the same height as the proposed tower.

Airport Manager Ted Anderson said he has no objection to the tower.

Town Manager Rich Underkofler told the commission that in negotiating the contract, Crown Castle was offered all land owned by the town for potential tower sites. He also noted that a shielded red light that cannot be seen from the ground is recommended so pilots are aware of the tower's presence.

An earlier attempt by the town to place a 100-foot tower at a water tank site in the Indian Hill neighborhood was dropped when residents protested. Under the terms of the agreement with Crown Castle, the town will receive $10,000 a year for the airport tower, in addition to 25 percent of all rent paid by wireless carriers that use the facility.

Jason Allen, a spokesperson for Crown Castle, confirmed that the company is currently looking for a second tower site, possibly at the Payson Event Center.

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