Hagåtña, Guam: On Monday, March 27, 2017, Senator Tom Ada introduced Bill No. 54-34 (COR) which aims to require the prior review and approval by the Guam Land Use Commission (GLUC) before any construction or installation of wireless telecommunication towers and structures is started. Applications for the construction and installation of cell phone towers are currently governed by a fifteen (15) year old Executive Order 2001-36 and an eight (8) year old GLUC Resolution (2008-02) that permit cell phone service providers and operators to construct and install cell phone towers prior to getting GLUC review and approval.

Furthermore, public notice to residents in the area is not required. “Because of the carte blanche ability currently enjoyed by communications companies to construct and install cell phone towers wherever they are needed, it is very possible to come home from work and find a new cell tower has been installed next to your property” Senator Ada said. Such was the case of a cell tower that was installed in a residential area in the village of Barrigada. “Deviating from public notice requirements and GLUC review and approval processes robs neighborhood residents of the opportunity to comment on the application and present their concerns to the GLUC and the village Municipal Planning Council,” Senator Ada further explains.

Bill No. 54-34 (COR) would also ensure that prior to the installation of cell towers, antennae, and monopoles; adequate public notices and comment opportunities are provided in compliance with Title 21, Chapter 61, of the Guam Code Annotated. These would include setback variances, height limits and zoning areas after a final decision and resolution by the GLUC is made; as well as duly noticed public hearings are conducted under the purview of the GLUC. “The purpose of this bill is to inform and receive public input from all surrounding residents or affected property owners before the cell tower is built in order to avoid unnecessary or unwanted consequences or violations,” said Senator Ada.

A copy of Bill No. 54-34 (COR) is attached or may be downloaded from the Office of Senator Tom Ada’s website (www.senatorada.org) or the Guam Legislature’s website (www.guamlegislature.com). For more information, please contact Senator Tom Ada’s office at 473-3301.