Chapter 190, ZONING


ARTICLE VIIA, Telecommunications Towers [Added 6-15-1998 by L.L. No. 5-1998]

§ 190-57.1. Purpose and intent.

The purpose of this article is to establish predictable and balanced regulations for the siting and screening of personal wireless services antennas, towers and accessory structures in order to accommodate the growth of such systems within the Village while protecting the public against any adverse impacts on aesthetic resources and avoiding potential damage to adjacent properties from tower failure through structural standards and setback requirements and to reduce the number of towers needed to serve the community by maximizing the use of existing towers and building.

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§ 190-57.2. Definitions.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:

ACCESSORY STRUCTURES -- Accessory buildings and structures, including base stations designed and used to shelter equipment and/or to support PWS. The term "accessory structures" does not include offices, long-term storage of vehicles or other equipment storage, or broadcast studios.

ANTENNA -- A device used to transmit and/or receive radio or electromagnetic waves, including but not limited to directional antennas, such as panels and microwave dishes and omni-directional antennas, such as whip antennas.

PERSONAL WIRELESS SERVICES (PWS) -- Commercial mobile services, unlicensed wireless services and common carrier wireless exchange access services as defined by Section 704 of the Federal Telecommunications Act.

TOWER -- Any ground- or roof-mounted pole, spire, structure or combination thereof taller than 15 feet, including supporting lines, cables, wires, braces and masts, built for the purpose of mounting an antenna, meteorological device or similar apparatus above grade.

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§ 190-57.3. Review authority.

  1. The Planning Board is hereby authorized to review and approve, approve with modifications, or disapprove site plans in accordance with Article XIV of this chapter.
  2. The Zoning Board of Appeals is hereby authorized to review and approve, approve with modifications or disapprove special use permits pursuant to this article. The Zoning Board of Appeals shall have the authority to impose such reasonable conditions and restrictions as are directly related to and incidental to the proposed antenna, tower or accessory structures.
  3. The applicant shall submit a complete long-form environmental assessment form (EAF) and a complete visual environmental assessment form (visual EAF addendum). In addition, the applicant will be required to prepare and submit a visual impact assessment, to include a zone of visibility map; pictorial representations of "before" and "after" views; assessment of the visual impact from abutting properties and streets.
  4. The Village is authorized to hire any consultants/experts necessary to assist the Boards in reviewing and evaluating the application. The applicant shall reimburse the Village for all costs and expenses incurred by the Village for the consultants'/experts' evaluation and consultation with the Boards. Notice of the hiring of a consultant/expert and the estimated cost of the consultant/expert shall be given to the applicant prior thereto. The applicant shall deposit with the Village, within 15 days after the notice of cost, the estimated cost of the consultant/expert, which the Village shall use to pay the consultant/expert. Any deposit not used shall be returned to the applicant.

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§ 190-57.4. Location requirements.

All towers erected, constructed or located within the Village shall comply with the following requirements:

  1. Towers shall be permitted in all nonresidential zoning districts. A proposal for a tower shall not be approved unless the Zoning Board of Appeals finds that the antenna planned for the proposed tower cannot be accommodated on an existing or approved tower or building due to one or more of the following reasons:
    1. The antenna would exceed the structural capacity of the existing or approved tower or building, as documented by a qualified professional engineer, and the existing or approved tower cannot be reinforced, modified or replaced to accommodate the planned or equivalent antenna at a reasonable cost.
    2. The antenna would cause interference materially impacting the usability of other existing or planned antenna at the tower or building, as documented by a qualified professional engineer, and the interference cannot be prevented at a reasonable cost.
    3. Existing or approved towers and buildings within the search radius cannot accommodate the antenna at a height necessary to function reasonably, as documented by a qualified professional engineer.
    4. Other foreseen reasons that make it infeasible to locate the antenna upon an existing or approved tower or building.
  2. Any proposed tower shall be designed, structurally, electrically and in all respects, to accommodate both the applicant's antennas and comparable antennas for at least two additional users if the tower is over 100 feet in height or for at least one additional user if the tower is over 60 feet but less than 100 feet in height. Towers must be designed to allow for future rearrangement of antennas upon the tower and to accept antennas mounted at varying heights.
  3. The applicant shall submit to the Board a letter of intent committing the applicant, and his/her successors in interest, to negotiate in good faith for shared use of the proposed tower by other PWS providers in the future. The issuance of a permit (assuming the tower is approved according to this section) shall commit the new tower owner and his/her successors in interest to:
    1. Respond in a timely comprehensive manner to a request for information from a potential shared-use applicant.
    2. Negotiate in good faith concerning future requests for shared use of the new tower by other PWS providers.
    3. Allow shared use of the new tower if another PWS provider agrees in writing to pay charges.
    4. Make no more than a reasonable charge for shared use, based on generally accepted accounting principles. The charge may include but is not limited to a pro rata share of the cost of site selection, planning, project administration, land costs, site design, construction and maintenance financing, return on equity, depreciation and all of the costs of adapting the tower or equipment to accommodate a shared user without causing electromagnetic interference.
  4. In order to keep neighboring municipalities informed, and to facilitate the possibility of directing that an existing tall structure or existing tower in a neighboring municipality be considered for shared use, the Board shall require that:
    1. An applicant who proposes a new tower shall notify, in writing, the legislative body of each municipality that borders the Village and the Monroe County Planning Board. Notification shall include the exact location of the proposed tower and a general description of the project, including but not limited to the height of the tower and its capacity for future shared use.
    2. Documentation of this notification shall be submitted at the time of application.

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§ 190-57.5. Performance standards.

  1. Proof of noninterference from antenna. Each application for installation of an antenna shall include either a preliminary or a certified statement that the installation of the antenna, including reception and transmission functions, will not interfere with the radio or television service enjoyed by adjacent residential and nonresidential properties or with public safety telecommunications. In the event that only a preliminary statement is submitted with the application, a final certified statement of noninterference will be provided and approved by the Village prior to the issuance of a permit. The statement shall be prepared by a professional engineer.
  2. Antenna safety. Antennas shall be subject to state and federal regulations pertaining to nonionizing radiation and other health hazards related to such facilities. The owner shall submit evidence of compliance with the FCC standards on a yearly basis. If new, more restrictive, standards are adopted, the antennas shall be made to comply or continued operations may be restricted by the legislative body. The cost of verification of compliance shall be borne by the owner and operator of the tower.
  3. Tower lighting. Towers shall not be illuminated by artificial means and shall not display strobe lights unless such lighting is specifically required by the Federal Aviation Administration or other federal or state authority for a particular tower. When incorporated into the approved design of the tower, light fixtures used to illuminate ball fields, parking lots or similar areas may be attached to the tower.
  4. Signs and advertising on towers. The use of any portion of a tower for signs other than warning or equipment information signs is prohibited; provided, however, that warning or equipment signs shall comply with the Sign Article of this chapter.EN
  5. Tower height limitations. Maximum height of a tower is limited to 150 feet above the ground upon which the antenna or the structure upon which the antenna is placed. The Zoning Board of Appeals may allow towers up to 200 feet high if the applicant can demonstrate, based upon the topography of the site and surrounding area, siting of the antenna, antenna design, surrounding tree cover and structures and/or through the use of screening, that off-site views of the tower will be minimized. The height limitation may be waived by the Zoning Board of Appeals when the antenna is mounted on an existing building or structure or to accommodate collocation.
  6. Tower building requirements.
    1. The use of guyed towers is prohibited. Towers must be self-supporting without the use of wires, cables, beams or other means. The design should utilize an open framework or monopole configuration. Permanent platforms or structures, exclusive of antennas that serve to increase off-site visibility, are prohibited.
    2. The base of the tower shall occupy no more than 500 square feet and the top of the tower shall be no larger than the base.
    3. Minimum spacing between tower locations is two miles.
  7. Access to towers. A road and parking will be provided to assure adequate emergency and service access. Maximum uses of existing roads, public or private, shall be made.
  8. Setbacks for towers and accessory structures. Towers and all accessory structures shall conform with each of the following minimum setback requirements:
    1. Towers and antennas shall be set back from the front, side and rear lot lines of the parcel upon which it is located a minimum of the height of the tower and any antennas or other fixture on top of the tower plus 25 feet. All other structures and accessory facilities shall observe required setbacks within the affected zone. Additional setbacks may be required to contain on site substantially all ice-fall or debris from tower failure and/or to preserve privacy of adjoining residential and public property.
    2. A tower's setback may be reduced in the sole discretion of the Zoning Board of Appeals to allow the integration of a tower into an existing or proposed structure such as a church steeple, light pole, power line or similar structure.
  9. Screening and security of towers and accessory structures.
    1. Existing on-site vegetation shall be preserved to the maximum extent practicable.
    2. The base of the tower and any accessory structures shall be landscaped and screened with trees or shrubs capable of forming a continuous hedge at least 10 feet in height within two years of planting.
    3. Towers and accessory structures shall be provided with security fencing to prevent unauthorized entry.
  10. Design of antennas, towers and accessory structures. Towers and antennas shall be designed to blend into the surrounding environment through the use of color and camouflaging architectural treatment, except in instances where the color is dictated by federal or state authorities such as the Federal Aviation Administration. Every antenna and tower shall be of neutral colors that are harmonious with and that blend with the natural features, buildings and structures surrounding such antenna and structure, provided, however, that directional or panel antenna and omnidirectional or whip antennas located on the exterior of a building that will also serve as an antenna tower shall be of colors that match, and cause the antenna to blend with, the exterior of the building. Accessory structures will be designed to be architecturally compatible with principal structures on the site.

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§ 190-57.6. Compliance with other laws.

The operator of every PWS antenna shall submit to the Clerk copies of all licenses and permits required by other agencies and governments with jurisdiction over the design, construction, location and operation of such antenna and shall maintain such licenses and permits and provide evidence of renewal or extension thereof when granted.

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§ 190-57.7. Assignment of permit.

Every permit granting approval of an antenna or tower shall state that any assignment or transfer of the permit or any rights thereunder may be made only with the approval of the Village.

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§ 190-57.8. Review.

The permit shall be subject to review by the Zoning Board of Appeals, at ten-year intervals, to determine whether the technology in the provision of PWS has changed such that the necessity for the permit at the time of its approval has been eliminated or modified and whether the permit should be modified or terminated as a result of any such change.

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§ 190-57.9. Fees.

The fee for applying for a special use permit for a tower shall be in accord with Chapter A194.

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§ 190-57.10. Abandoned or unused towers.

Abandoned or unused towers or portions of towers shall be removed as follows:

  1. In the event that a tower and/or accessory facility is no longer used for the purpose specified in the application, or the tower and/or accessory facility ceases operations for a period of 90 days, such tower, structures and facilities shall be dismantled and removed from the site within 90 days of receipt of written notice from the Village Board, and the site restored to its original condition. The applicant and the owner of record of the premises shall be required to execute and file with the Village of Honeoye Falls a bond or other form of security acceptable to the Village as to form and manner of execution, in an amount sufficient for the faithful performance of the terms and conditions of this article, the conditions of the permit or approval issued hereunder, for the observation of all town local laws or ordinances, to cover the maintenance of the tower during its lifetime, to provide for its removal and for the Village's consultant. The amount required shall be determined by the Planning Board. In the event of default upon the performance of any such conditions or any of them, the bond or security shall be forfeited to the Village, which shall be entitled to maintain an action thereon. The bond or security shall remain in full force and effect until the removal of the transmission tower, telecommunication tower, communication installation, freestanding tower and accessory facility/structure and site restoration.
  2. Unused portions of towers above a manufactured connection shall be removed within six months of the time of antenna relocation. The replacement of portions of a tower previously removed requires the issuance of a new special use permit.

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§ 190-57.11. Effect on existing towers and antennas.

Antennas and towers in existence which do not conform to or comply with this law are subject to the following provisions:

  1. Antennas and towers may continue in use for the purpose now used and as now existing but may not be replaced or structurally altered without complying in all respects with this law.
  2. If such antennas or towers are hereafter damaged or destroyed due to any reason or cause whatsoever, the antenna or tower may be repaired and restored to its former use, location and physical dimensions without complying with this article; provided, however, that if the cost of repairing the tower to the former use, physical dimensions and location would be 10% or more of the cost of a new tower of like kind and quality, then the tower may not be repaired or restored except in full compliance with this article.

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§ 190-57.12. Severability.

If any word, phrase or part of this article shall be declared unconstitutional, the same shall be severed and separated from the remainder of this article, and said remainder shall continue in full force and effect.

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