SOS* Reminder: Cell Tower Hearing TODAY!

*  Save Our Schools

State Representative Karla Drenner’s House Bill 1128 will be presented at 12:00 Noon TODAY, February 27, 2012 by the Environmental Committee.  Please be there to show your support for this critical bill.  Here is the text of the bill:

 http://www.legis.ga.gov/Legislation/20112012/122316.pdf.

WHAT: Environmental Committee Presentation of HB1128 to the Local Delegation
WHEN: Monday, Feb. 27, 12:00 Noon
WHERE: Room 415 of the Coverdell Legislative Office Building, across the street from the Georgia State Capitol.
CALL TO ACTION: Contact your state representatives to ask they support this bill and place it on the priority list to make the agenda this week!

As many people as possible must attend this hearing! Please call your friends and neighbors and ask them to attend this hearing.  Their support for this legislation is essential!

If anyone will attend to report on today’s meeting and/or videotape the meeting, we will publish your report and/or videotape on DeKalb School Watch blog. 

House Bill 1128, which keeps cell towers off school grounds, also is retroactive!  That means it will benefit all DeKalb County schools, including those already caught in the T-Mobile/Paul Womack web of deceit and duplicity.  Please call or email your state representative TODAY to show your support and ask that House Bill 1128 be considered a priority for the agenda this week. If House Bill 1128 is not on this week’s agenda, it will be another YEAR before it can come up before the full delegation for a vote!

More information on HB 1128 is posted here:
http://www.getthecelloutatl.com/#!/2012/02/2011-2012-regular-session-hb-1128.html

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27 Responses to SOS* Reminder: Cell Tower Hearing TODAY!

  1. GTCO-ATL says:

    Meeting just moved to room 605!! Drenner said she will be calling for a moritorim on cell tower construction and introducing local legislation for DeKalb County.

  2. The Deal says:

    Please keep us updated on what happened today! Thank you!

  3. What happened yesterday?

  4. DeKalb School Watch has not yet received a report or an audio tape on yesterday’s meeting at the Capitol regarding Rep. Karal Drenner’s proposed, retroactive cell tower legislation (House Bill 1128). We will publish the information as soon as we receive it.

    Meanwhile, please e-mail your state representative and tell your representative that you want HB 1128 put on the agenda this week.

    DeKalb School Watch will publish any responses received from state representatives if you will forward them to us.

    One more thing. Please call and/or e-mail Sen. Fran Millar (R) and ask him to support Sen. Jason Carter’s bill as a co-sponsor: fran.millar@senate.ga.gov (404) 463-2260

    Sen. Millar has already stated he is against cell towers on school grounds, so he is the best candidate for a co-sponsor that we are aware of at this time.

  5. Anonymous says:

    The correct bill is HB 1128.

  6. Thank you! We were given the wrong House Bill number. We will make the correction throughout.

  7. Ned says:

    This has been live since 6 pm last night so I don’t know why no one has posted it:
    “This bill will not affect any contracts already in place,” Rep. Karla Drenner said.
    http://www.wsbtv.com/news/news/dekalb-lawmaker-file-bill-stop-cell-towers-schools/nK6tR/

  8. Please no towers in schools, period!!!!

  9. Thank you, Ned, for posting the URL of a WSB story on HB 1128! This is a community blog and we depend on our readers to report on meetings and provide other pieces of newsworthy information.

  10. Jackie, I couldn’t agree more! However, Mr. Womack has already sailed that ship and the stakeholders lost again against DCSS. The towers are going to be built, have a problem with that? Please take your complaints to Mr. Womack, who chaired the meeting and rammed this through. Also blame Tom Bowen, he was on vacation when this meeting took place. He wanted no part of this, since he’s running for County Commissioner someday. Also blame the 6 BOE members who voted for this thing without true public input. The public never had an honest chance, since pretty much anything DCSS is most likely covered in corruption and deceit. Those two words are the only ones that Walker and Womack know. Remember folks only Edler and Jester dissented, the others well maybe they got cell phones out of the deal. The thing I’d love to know is, who is Womack’s cell provider? One sad thing that remains true, THE TOWERS ARE BEING BUILT! Is there anything the stakeholders can do to stop T-Mobile? Yes there is, STOP USING T-MOBILE, if enough people did it then it might make an impact. Bottom line Womack sold the entire district out! Please retire Mr. Womack, your lack of integrity and honesty, through out this entire process, reminds me of a guy who used to run this county with an iron fist, Vernon Jones!

  11. The Deal says:

    All of the latest emails from the various cell tower opponents’ organizations say that the legislation would be retroactive.

  12. AMG,

    Please read HB 1128, the legislation is RETROACTIVE and does NOT allow the school systems to enter legally binding lease agreements with the private sector on school property.

    If you have any information that is contrary, please provoide.

    CFTK

  13. Anonymous says:

    ” Remember folks only Edler and Jester dissented, the others well maybe they got cell phones out of the deal”

    All of the BOE members have cellphones, courtesy of the DeKalb taxpayers. I believe the county contracts with AT&T? That’s who the dropped calls in the Northlake area. I guess I just don’t understand why the school system has to ensure everyone has cell phone service, especially when the schools that will be providing it get absolutely NOTHING out of it. The students at Briarlake will be losing outside space – either where they take Physical Education classes or where they have Environmental Studies in their outdoor classroom. Losing instructional space may be happening at other schools slated for towers as well. This is a good deal for grown-ups but a bad deal for kids. Didn’t Womack even look at what was going to happen instructionally to the students?

  14. Steven says:

    We were at a meeting last night with Rep. Drenner and she mentioned several times that her bill would not be retroactive. That being said, I do not agree with AMG that these towers are a done deal. If you live outside of Commissioner Radar’s or Boyer’s District you need to contact your Dekalb County Commissioner and keep up the pressure on them to enforce the zoning code on these sites.

  15. Steven says:

    Donna Edler said Paul Womack wanted cell service at his house and for his friends in his neighborhood, so we are getting towers. Paul Womack could not care less about how these towers affect the children of Dekalb County.

  16. Steven, I hope you’re right. Will the county step in? Not the school system but county? I don’t see much changing since DCSS does not take orders from DeKalb County and vice versa. Once again it’s going to take a lawsuit and the taxpayers get shafted since we will pay the attorney fees for the plaintiff as well as the defendant in this case. Yea! WE LOSE! Sorry for my pessimism, but since I found out DCSS FOUND a $41 million dollar shortfall for SPLOST III funds, I’m a bit worried about our future. Wake me up when the DeKalb stakeholders can actually talk about educating our kids.

  17. Skippy says:

    The taxpayers will not pay for either side if a lawsuit goes forward and there are several groups considering just that, trust me. But, the tower contracts specifically state that T-mobile will pay any and all litigation expenses for lawsuits brought against the leasor (DCSS). So, the endless financial resources of the telecomm industry (and they all back each other on issues like these as they can all benefit from a tower in the middle of a neighborhood and they all want to try it if the first guy can get in and set the precedent) will be available to fight the collection of neighbors who are banning together to protect their property rights. The parents at these schools have been mostly silent on the issue, as they are either uninformed, incorrectly represented by their PTA as being in favor of the towers or just afriad to cross what the board wants for fear of retaliation against their child. The ones who are truly concerned are likely looking for alternate schools to transfer their child to if the towers go up.

    Briarlake PTA is the only one that has come forward in opposition to the tower at their school and supposedly wrote a resolution against them, but they either did not share that resolution with the other PTAs, or they passed it up the chain to the DeKalb PTA who then did nothing with it. It is a shame that one PTA can put their manpower and financial resources behind something when others feel their hands are tied. They would all do much better to work together and leverage the poitical power of the PTA to make the Drenner Bill retroactive so that no towers have to be built at any schools in our county. Once a single tower goes up, federal law may pre-empt anything the state may lay down as law now because the FCC ruling states that a local government cannot discriminate against providers – so if we open up school grounds at a single site, it will be “open season” for the school grounds and “hello slush fund” for the board members and principals putting these deals together.

  18. Steven says:

    I am working with my son’s PTA at a school that is not getting a tower to adopt a resolution opposing them. I have met with his pricipal to inform her of what is going on in the county and she supports us in opposing them. I urge everyone to do the same.

  19. GTCO-ATL says:

    GREAT IDEA!!

    We are involved in talks with the national PTA about taking a stand, but they are not ready to do that, yet. In the meantime, they said it is up to the local units who are urged to then send their resolutions on up the chain so that they can become regional or state resolutions as well.

  20. Miss Management says:

    Again, responsibility for this situation goes squarely to Paul Womack. Hopefully people in his district will remember that in November. He says he’s going to run again.

  21. Ned says:

    Saw a contruction truck on the tower site at Jolly Elementary Thursday morning.

  22. marierose says:

    Why the quiet on paul womack? He sold the school system out for his own financial gain. He made a back door deal with the phone company, knowing full well there would be objections from the community? He then has an “appeasement” meeting with few angry parent, knowing full well that it was his intentions to push this through all along. Suckers! So focused on the racial issues on these blogs and on the board, allowed this to slip by. So focused on the “friends and family” issue, while Womack slips your kids radiation/cancer. What an old buzzard! Someone should lean into him at the meetings. You all are being too quiet and gentle on such a gravely serious issue.

  23. Marie, It’s not that quiet regarding Paul Womack. Go back into the archives at the original site and enjoy the madness! The BOE meeting he chaired, when Bowen was out of town, July 2011 was hilarious! Historically, this was the meeting that always involved dicey issues with opponents. In the midst of Summer and no one is focused with the schools. Womack added this to the agenda, no REAL notice given and it caught everyone by surprise. Only Edler and Jester dissented in the move, sighting no transparency. Marie you’ll find many objections with Womack here at DSW. No doubt he is part of the problem with our ailing school system!

  24. Dazed n' Confuzed says:

    The people from this blog helped bring forth a transcript from the meeting with the angry parents so that the rest of the public could read just how arrogant and self-serving he is. If you are sensing any quiet, it is likely that we have already gone down that road at the time it was happening.

    To the person who noted the truck at Jolly, thank you for the information. It is a horrible thought that so much green space at our schools will soon be gone and replaced with ugliness. Can you imagine looking out the window at school, hoping to be inspired and seeing nothing but concrete and a huge cell tower and base station? There would go your hopes and dreams right up in smoke! What Womack and his ATT pals are donig to our schools is outright criminal. And, now, they are even trying to push legislation to make protesting against them a felony!

    BTW, I wonder if Womack even realized that Jolly is in his district, too. He caters to the Lakeside and Vahalla Boosters almost exclusively. He lives only a couple blocks from Briarlake, but I heard him asking someone for directions to the Briarlake campus at the Fall Festival (while on foot). If he does not know how to represent his own neighborhood, I hope to God there are not voters out there who would want to risk electing him to represnt them.

  25. Dazed n' Confuzed says:

    Not so hilarious if your school was on that list, Media Guy. And, please note that Speaks asked about other ways communities could object if they were not informed and Womack and Donahue answered that there would be a due diligence period of 6 months. That answer sounded like the schools would get a chance to speak up then at a zoning hearing. That did not happen. So, why doesn’t Speaks call Womack out on an ethics violation? Perhaps that would have changed her vote and possibly McChestney’s vote as well. Then we would be looking at a 4 – 4- 1 vote with Bowen out. Don’t know how they would have handled that.

  26. allthewayhome says:

    This bill was submitted and approved, but has now been stalled by Rep. Chuck Sims of the House Intragovernmental Coordination Committee. Drenner put out a call to supporters of this bill to contact him and respectfully change his mind.

    There was another hearing yesterday, 3/6 on this issue. Was anyone able to go? Looking for an update.

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