Point Roberts Radio Tower Proposal

Updates

On October 7, 2015 the Skagit County Superior Court upheld the decision of the Whatcom County Hearing Examiner to deny BBC Broadcasting Inc. a conditional use permit for a radio broadcasting facility in Point Roberts.

BBC Broadcasting Inc. has filed an application with the US Federal Communications Commission to renew its license to continue broadcasting from its existing facility in Ferndale.

This brings closure to a lengthy and hard fought community dispute. Mayor Lois E. Jackson and Delta Council would like to congratulate everyone involved, including the Cross Border Coalition to Stop the Towers, and residents of Tsawwassen and Point Roberts.


Overview

Since BBC Broadcasting Inc. submitted a Zoning Conditional Use application and proposal to erect five radio transmission towers in Point Roberts to Whatcom County Planning Department in July 2013, Delta Council received considerable correspondence from Tsawwassen residents concerned about the potential for blanketing interference effects, potential health impacts, and impacts on the environment and wildlife.

On October 21, 2014, the Corporation of Delta received formal notification from the Whatcom County Hearing Examiner denying the Point Roberts Radio Towers proposal. According to the Hearing Examiner, the application was denied based on the following: 

  • "the height requirements of the Point Roberts Special District apply to this Application;
  • that the Application cannot functionally meet these requirements; 
  • and that the requested Zoning Conditional Use Permit Application to allow BBC Broadcasting Inc. to construct and operate a five antenna array of AM Radio broadcast towers of approximately 145-feet to 150-feet in height, at 1563 McKenzie Way, Point Roberts, Washington, must be denied.”

Point Roberts is located in Washington State, US, therefore Delta has no regulatory jurisdiction over the proposal. Delta Council has sought answers to the community’s concerns from other authorities, including letters to Whatcom County and to E-Comm asking about potential adverse effects on emergency communications systems. In November 2013, Mayor Jackson, Councillor Paton and CAO George Harvie travelled to Ottawa to meet with federal government officials to seek assistance from Industry Canada. Mayor Lois E. Jackson has also written to the Whatcom County Hearing Examiner indicating that the Conditional Use Permit should be denied on the basis that the project has potential to create adverse effects on local residents and to Industry Canada asking that it intercede on behalf of Delta residents to ensure adverse effects to not occur. View all of the correspondence below.

Reports and Related Documents

Contact

For any questions related to Delta's involvement, please contact:
Sean McGill, Director of Human Resources & Corporate Planning
t: 604-946-3218
e: smcgill@delta.ca

For information about the local community group, contact the Cross Border Coalition to Stop the Radio Towers.

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