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A. Granting of Wireless Telecommunications Facilities Variations. The County Board may grant variations for any of the regulations, conditions, and restrictions of this section after one (1) public hearing on the proposed variation, by a favorable vote of a simple majority of the members present at a meeting held no later than seventy-five (75) calendar days after submission of an application by the telecommunications carrier. If the County Board fails to act on the application within seventy-five (75) calendar days after submission, the application is deemed approved. The variation standards and process in this section are required in place of the variation provisions of § 16.20.020 (Variation). Modifications to wireless telecommunications facilities by an amount less than what is defined as a “substantial change” by the Federal Communications Commission under 47 CFR 1.40001 (Wireless Facility Modifications) do not require a variation.
B. Telecommunications Facilities Variation Applications.
1. Application for a variation shall be filed with the Hearing Officer appointed by the County Board, using forms available from that officer. A hearing date for a variation will be set by the Hearing Officer when all of the filing requirements of this Ordinance have been met. The Hearing Officer will not consider the sufficiency of the application and evidence until after a public hearing has been held and all parties have been given an opportunity to address such application, evidence, and documents. After said hearing, the Hearing Officer will make a finding as to the sufficiency of the application, evidence, documents, and testimony and report this finding in the recommendation to the County Board.
2. Applications shall contain at a minimum, the nature of the request, a legal description, permanent parcel number and common description of the property, a statement of the present zoning of the subject property and surrounding properties, the current address of the petitioners, and a verification by the owners or their authorized agent attesting to the truth and correctness of all facts, statements, and information presented. In addition, applications for variations shall contain a survey of the property by a surveyor registered in the State of Illinois, including the location of the proposed tower. The legal description in the survey shall coincide with the legal description on the petition, legal notices, and ordinance, when presented.
3. All petitions shall be brought in the name of the record title owner, or the owner or owners of the beneficial interest, through their attorneys or authorized agents. If a contract purchaser or tenant is involved, either with or without a contingent right, the contract purchaser or tenant shall be revealed and become a second party to the petition, but such contract purchaser or tenant may not file without owner.
4. If application is made by the trustee or beneficiary of any land trust for a variation, the application and notice shall identify each beneficiary of such land trust by name and address and define his interest therein. All such applications shall be verified by the applicant in the applicant’s capacity as trustee or by the beneficiary(s) as beneficial owner(s) of an interest in such land trust.
C. Telecommunications Facilities Variation Standards. In considering an application for a variation, the Hearing Officer and County Board will consider the following, and no other matters:
1. Whether, but for the granting of a variation, the service that the telecommunications carrier seeks to enhance or provide with the proposed facility will be less available, impaired or diminished in quality, quantity, or scope of coverage.
2. Whether the conditions upon which the application for variations is based are unique in some respect or, if not, whether the strict application of the regulations would result in a hardship on the telecommunications carrier.
3. Whether a substantial adverse effect on public safety will result from some aspect of the facility’s design or proposed construction, but only if that aspect of design or construction is modifiable by the applicant.
4. Whether there are benefits to be derived by the users of the services to be provided or enhanced by the facility and whether public safety and emergency response capabilities would benefit by the establishment of the facility.
5. The extent to which the design of the proposed facility reflects compliance with this Ordinance.
D. Telecommunications Facilities Variation Notice of Hearing. Notice of public hearing shall be published at least fifteen (15) days prior to the hearing in a newspaper of general circulation published in the County by the applicant and sent by certified mail at least fifteen (15) days prior to the hearing to the owners of record of all property that is adjacent to the lot upon which the facility is proposed to be sited by the applicant. The notice shall contain:
1. The particular location of the real estate for which the variation is requested by legal description; street address, or, if no street address exists, then by locating such real estate with reference to any well-known landmark, highway, road, thoroughfare, or intersection; permanent property index number; and township name.
2. Whether the petitioner or applicant is acting for himself or in the capacity of an agent, alter ego, or representative of a owner and stating the name and address of the actual and true owner.
3. Whether petitioner or applicant is a corporation, and if a corporation, the correct names and addresses of all officers and directors, and of all stockholders and shareholders owning any interest in excess of seven and one-half percent (7.5%) of all outstanding stock of such corporation.
4. Whether the petitioner or applicant or his owner, if other than applicant, is a business or entity doing business under any assumed name, and if so, the name and residence of all true and actual owners of such business or entity.
5. Whether the petitioner or applicant is a partnership, joint venture, syndicate, or an unincorporated voluntary association, and if so, the names and addresses of all partners, joint ventures, syndicate members, or members of the unincorporated voluntary association.
6. A statement of the present zoning on the parcel in question.
7. A brief statement of the proposed variation.
8. The time, date, and location of the hearing.
E. Hearing Process. The following additional requirements apply to the public hearing held on an application to the wireless telecommunications standards:
1. A hearing shall be held on any proposed variation in the County Government Center.
2. No more than one (1) public hearing will be held or required.
3. Filing fees for variation hearings are in accordance with the fee schedule adopted by the County Board and shall cover all costs.
4. The public hearing will be conducted by the Hearing Officer in the manner established by the Hearing Officer.
5. A detailed record of the proceedings shall be taken by a court reporter present at the hearing to transcribe the testimony.
6. The recommendation of the Hearing Officer to the County Board shall be supported by written findings of fact upon each of the authorized matters for consideration.
7. Action by the County Board.
a. Variations may be granted by the County Board upon receipt of a report and recommendation from the Hearing Officer, by a favorable vote of a simple majority of the members present at a meeting held no later than seventy-five (75) calendar days after submission of an application.
b. Failure of the County Board to act on the application within seventy-five (75) calendar days after submission will deem the application approved.
(Ord. O-201410-10-035, passed 10-14-2014; Ord. O-201601-ZBA-006, passed 1-19-2016; Ord. O-201603-ZBA-010, passed 3-17-2016, § 5.3; Ord. O-201803-ZBA-10-08, passed 3-19-2018; Ord. O-201808-10-033, passed 8-21-2018)