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Point Roberts Radio Tower Proposal Denied

Oct 21, 2014
The Corporation of Delta received formal notification from the Whatcom County Hearing Examiner today, 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."

The Whatcom County Public Hearing for the KPRI Point Roberts radio tower proposal originally scheduled to take place next week has been cancelled in light of the Hearing Examiner’s decision to deny the application.

“This is a tremendous victory for our community,” said Mayor Lois E. Jackson. “The level of engagement, lobbying, and hard work undertaken by many concerned Delta citizens, who banded together and worked in concert with us against this proposal, has truly paid off. By working together with our citizens, we have achieved the desired outcome we sought.”

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

With the proposal being in Point Roberts, Washington, The Corporation of Delta has no regulatory jurisdiction over this proposal. Prior to today’s announcement, key actions undertaken by Delta against this proposal include letters from Mayor Lois E. Jackson to Whatcom County to express concerns on behalf of residents and to E-Comm asking about potential adverse effects on emergency communications systems. In November 2013, Mayor Jackson, Councillor Ian Paton and CAO George V. Harvie travelled to Ottawa to meet with federal government officials to outline the community's concerns. The strongest communication to date, Mayor Jackson wrote 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. Mayor Jackson also wrote to Industry Canada asking that it intercede on behalf of Delta residents to ensure adverse effects do not occur.

At a “No Radio Towers” Townhall meeting held in South Delta on September 17, 2014, Delta’s Chief Administrative Officer, George V. Harvie, spoke on behalf of Mayor and Council outlining Delta’s position against the proposal, steps taken to date and Delta’s plans to speak at the Whatcom County Public Hearing.