Skip to code content (skip section selection)
(A) In general - Wireless communications facilities shall not be constructed, installed, or maintained before approval is granted by the manager or a special use permit is issued, as set out in this section. Applicants are encouraged to submit a single application for multiple wireless communications facilities.
(B) Approval by manager - Within the time period and with such public notice as is prescribed by State law, the manager shall approve or conditionally approve applications for the following wireless communications facilities that comply with all of the development standards of this division and the zone in which such facilities are to be located.
(1) A stealth facility not located in a residential zone;
(2) A stealth facility within 500 feet of a scenic highway;
(3) An attached or roof-mounted wireless communications facility that is more than 500 feet from a scenic highway;
(4) A co-located wireless communications facility that is more than 200 feet from a scenic highway;
(5) A wireless communications facility on property owned, leased, or otherwise controlled by the city; and
(6) A micro-cell facility within a public right-of-way or utility easement.
(C) Denial by manager; appeal - If an application to the manager for wireless communications facilities does not meet the standards set out in subsection (B) above, the manager shall deny the application in writing, stating the basis for denial. Within ten days of the manager's denial of an application for wireless communications facilities, the applicant may appeal the manager's decision to the commission by filing with the secretary of the commission a written notice of appeal, stating the reasons that the applicant believes the manager's decision to be incorrect. The secretary of the commission shall set the date of hearing on the appeal for not less than 21 or more than 30 days from the date of filing the appeal and shall give notice of a public hearing on the appeal pursuant to Cal. Gov't Code, Section 65091. Not more than 30 days following the termination of the hearing on the appeal, the commission shall adopt a resolution granting or denying the appeal. The decision of the commission shall be final and not subject to further administrative appeal.
(1) A wireless communications facility in a residential zone;
(2) A non-stealth facility in a commercial, manufacturing, business and research park, or central business district zone;
(3) A wireless communications facility with an individual support tower (e.g., monopole or lattice tower);
(4) A non-stealth facility within 500 feet of a scenic highway, when the facility is significantly screened;
(5) An attached facility within 500 feet of a scenic highway or a co-located wireless communications facility on an existing tower within 200 feet of a scenic highway;
(6) A wireless communications facility that does not comply with all of the development standards of this article or the zone in which such facility is to be located, but that can be conditioned to eliminate potential impacts or reduce potential impacts to an acceptable level through the issuance of a special use permit in conformance with this article.
(7) A wireless communications facility within a Southern California Edison (SCE) substation, whether or not located within 500 feet from a scenic highway, as long as the substation contains existing SCE poles at least as tall as one-half the height of the proposed wireless communications facility and such facility is unobtrusively integrated into the substation design.
(E) Issuance of master special use permit - In order for the city to control cumulative development of wireless communications facilities on a parcel, a master special use permit issued pursuant to sections 16-530 to 16-553 is required when an additional wireless communications facility is proposed on a parcel that already has one or more such facilities. The applicant for the master special use permit shall be the property owner, not a lessee; however, a lessee may act as the property owner's agent.
(F) Information for special use permit or manager's approval - The application for a special use permit or for the manager's approval shall require the following information. If the application is for the manager's approval, the manager, in his or her discretion, may waive items of information.
(1) Site information -
(a) A scaled site plan clearly indicating the location, type, and height of the proposed wireless communications facility, on-site land uses and zoning, adjacent land uses and zoning (including that of any adjacent municipality or the county), adjacent roadways, proposed means of access, setbacks from property lines, elevation drawings of the proposed wireless communications facility and any other structures, topography, parking, fencing and other information required by the manager;
(b) A complete description of the site, including what telecommunications objectives the proposed wireless communications facility will implement, such as coverage areas and system capacity;
(c) A legal description of the boundaries of the site and the legal parcel;
(d) A map showing the location of the nearest habitable structure, if closer than 1,000 feet, and the distance from the proposed wireless communications facility to the structure;
(e) A map showing the distance of the proposed wireless communications facility from other facilities and the type of construction of existing wireless communications facilities; and
(f) A map and a description of on-site and adjacent scenic areas (including scenic highways), habitat resources, water bodies, and significant vegetation.
(2) Electromagnetic frequency information -
(a) A report prepared by a radio frequency engineer approved by the manager, showing that radio frequency radiation/electromagnetic frequency emitted by the proposed wireless communications facility will conform to the safety standards adopted by the FCC.
(b) The manager shall waive the foregoing report if the applicant submits evidence satisfactory to the manager that the proposed wireless communications facility meets the environmental evaluation exemption standards set out in Title 47 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
(3) Co-location information - The applicant shall demonstrate that the applicant has made reasonable efforts to colocate the proposed wireless communications facility in accordance with sections 16-489. The applicant shall provide:
(a) A written summary of all efforts to co-locate the proposed wireless communications facility with an existing such facility, either on the same property or in the general vicinity, including copies of requests for co-location to existing carriers and any responses received;
(b) If an existing wireless communications facility is not proposed for co-location, a letter explaining why such facility is not suitable for co-location, including factors such as lack of existing towers in the area, topography, frequency interference, line of sight problems, available land, and zoning restrictions; and
(c) A statement as to whether construction of the proposed wireless communications facility will accommodate co-location of additional antennae for future users.
(4) Visual impact information -
(a) Photographs or computer enhanced representations of the project site “before” and “after” installation, showing the proposed tower and antennae and any landscaping or screening proposed to lessen the visual impact of the wireless communications facility;
(b) If the site is visible from a scenic highway, a residential neighborhood, or a public hiking trail, the photographs or computer enhanced representations shall show the site from those points of view. If the photographs or computer enhanced representations show multiple viewpoints, the applicant shall also provide an index map and key for identification.
(c) The color proposed for the tower and the reasons why that color is best for the proposed location;
(d) A landscape plan designed to screen the proposed wireless communications facility to the maximum extent feasible, or statement of reasons why landscaping is not necessary or feasible;
(e) Additional information, maps, drawings, as required by the manager, designed to show that the proposed wireless communications facility meets the intent of the city's general plan and scenic resource protection goals and policies.
(5) Capacity information - Information on the total antenna capacity for the proposed tower and any other proposed structures.
(6) Statement of intent - A statement of intent regarding the establishment of utilities and services, such as electricity.
(7) Evidence - Evidence that the parcel for the proposed site was legally created.
(8) Access proof required - A title report or other document demonstrating that the applicant has legal access to the proposed site.
(9) Lease agreement - An agreement to lease space on the proposed support structure to other users.
(10) Failure characteristics - Documentation that identifies failure characteristics of the tower and demonstrates that the site and setbacks are of adequate size to contain falling debris.
(11) Notification proof required - Evidence that the applicant has notified all wireless communications service providers of the applicant's plans to develop the proposed wireless communications facility.
(12) Operating license - Evidence that the applicant has a current operating license from the FCC.
(G) Additional information for master special use permit - The application for a master special use permit shall require the following information, as well as the information required for a special use permit:
(1) A plot plan of the proposed master special use permit boundary, showing all existing and proposed wireless communications facilities, any additional area needed to provide required landscaping or screening for such facilities, and the boundaries of individual lease areas; and
(2) Elevations and total build-out information for each tower.
(H) Fees - No application for wireless communications facilities or appeal from decisions of the manager or the commission concerning such applications shall be accepted unless accompanied by a fee in the amount set by resolution of the city council.
(I) Expiration and reapplication -
(1) Any approval by the manager or special use permit or master special use permit granted for stealth, micro-cell or significantly screened wireless communications facilities, or wireless communications facilities located in SCE substations, that become more prominent or visible because of a change in the support structure, screening, surrounding structures or landscape, shall be deemed to expire on 90 days' written notice from the manager to the wireless communications facilities provider, provided, however, that the manager may extend the period of expiration as set out in subdivision (2) of this subsection. Examples of such situations include, but are not limited to, the removal of vegetation that formerly screened such facilities; the removal or deterioration of a structure that formerly screened such facilities; and the removal of an SCE substation or the undergrounding of utilities in an SCE substation in which such facilities are located.
(2) Such notice shall identify the location of the wireless communications facilities and the change that rendered such facilities more prominent or visible. Such notice shall state that the wireless communications provider shall reduce such prominence or visibility by taking action as described by the manager, to be completed to the satisfaction of the manager within 90 days of the date of the notice or the approval or special use permit or master special use permit shall expire 90 days from the date of the notice. Alternatively, the notice shall state that no action can be taken to sufficiently reduce such prominence or visibility, and shall require the wireless communications provider to remove the wireless communications facilities within 90 days of the date of notice. The manager may extend any such 90-day period for a reasonable time if the manager determines that the wireless communications provider is exercising due diligence to take the required action and reasonably requires more time to complete the required action.
(3) If the wireless communications provider does not appeal the issuance of such notice and attempts to comply with the notice by taking the action specified by the manager to reduce the prominence or visibility of the wireless communications facilities, and the manager is not satisfied with such attempts, the manager shall give written notice to the wireless communications provider of additional corrective action that must be completed within a specified time. In the alternative, or after such additional corrective action has been attempted, the manager may give written notice to the wireless communications provider that such attempts are unsatisfactory and that the approval, special use permit or master special use permit has expired or will expire at the time stated in the original notice.
(4) Within ten days of the manager's issuance of a notice under this subsection (I), the wireless communications provider may appeal to the commission as provided in subsection 16-488(C) or may file a new application for the wireless communications facilities on a basis other than stealth, micro-cell or significantly screened facilities. The expiration of the approval or special use permit or master special use permit shall be stayed pending the commission's decision on the appeal or the manager's or commission's decision on the new application.
(5) On or before expiration of an approval, special use permit or master special use permit under this subsection (I), the wireless communications provider, at such provider's expense, shall remove the wireless communications facilities.
(`64 Code, Sec. 34-233) (Ord. No. 2449, 2539)